Will Healthscope return to the public arena?

A return to the public market could be on the playing cards for Australia’s second largest private hospital operator, Healthscope, with owners TPG Capital and The Carlyle Group said to be exploring their options.

TPG and Carlyle, two of the world’s leading private equity firms, purchased the business in 2010 for $2.7 billion but believe that now might be a good time to sell based on improved political stability following the Coalition win, as well as growing demand for healthcare from an aging population.

As reported by The Australian Financial Review, a number of investment banks have put their hand up for the role as advisers, although a decision hasn’t actually been made by the owners yet. Several Asian buyers have also expressed their interest in the company.

The company boasts a valuation believed to be around $4 billion following its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of $328.1 million for the 2013 financial year.

Foolish takeaway

Given the success of companies such as Ramsay Health Care (ASX: RHC) and Virtus Health (ASX: VRT) over recent months, shares in Healthscope could also prove successful as they continue to explore opportunities for growth.

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Motley Fool contributor Ryan Newman does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned.

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