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China's booming healthcare sector draws investors

Published Wed, Feb 11, 2015 · 09:50 PM
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Hong Kong

INVESTORS are rushing into China's booming healthcare business, helping M&A deal values surpass those of the hot Internet sector as the country prepares to cater to hundreds of millions of elderly patients.

Encouraged by a relaxation of foreign ownership rules last year and a rapidly ageing population, private equity firms such as TPG Capital and industry players including Malaysia's IHH Healthcare Bhd are investing in Chinese hospitals, pharmaceutical companies and device makers.

The prospect of 223 million people aged 65 or older predicted to live in China by 2030 is just too enticing for these companies, despite significant risks such as weak hospital infrastructure, rising valuations and a dearth of doctors. The companies have begun leveraging connections of local partners to hire doctors, and to help expedite local permits to start work on planned pr…

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