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Fortis Healthcare shares surge nearly 18 pc on merger buzz

Business Finance

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Shares of Fortis Healthcare soared nearly 18 per cent today amid reports that Manipal hospital, backed by TPG, is in advanced talks to merge the company with itself.

The stock erased its early losses and zoomed 17.61 per cent to settle at Rs 148.30 on BSE. During the day, it surged 24.54 per cent to Rs 157.05.

On NSE, shares of the company zoomed 17.88 per cent to close at Rs 148.60.

The company's market valuation went up by Rs 1,152.54 crore to Rs 7,691.54 crore.

On the equity volume front, 96.87 lakh shares of the company were traded on BSE and over 8 crore shares changed hands on NSE during the day.

BSE had sought clarification from Fortis Healthcare with reference to reports that Manipal hospital is in advanced talks to merge Fortis Health with itself.

In a clarification to BSE, Fortis Healthcare later said, "The company is still evaluating the best possible way to raise the fund and no firm decision in this regard has been approved by the Board till date. We will keep the stock exchanges updated/informed."

The filing further added that the company in the past informed the stock exchanges about fund raising options of up to Rs 5,000 crore.

Fortis Healthcare Ltd today said its wholly-owned arm Fortis Hospitals had deployed funds to the tune of Rs 473 crore as secured short-term investments to group firms of its promoters, billionaire Singh brothers.

Responding to a report by Bloomberg, which said "Singh brothers took at least 5 billion rupees ($78 million) out of the publicly-traded hospital company they control without board approval about a year ago", Fortis Healthcare said the loans are adequately secured and repayment has since commenced as per agreed payment schedule.

The report citing unnamed sources had stated the company's auditor, Deloitte Haskins & Sells LLP had "refused to sign off on the company's second-quarter results until the funds were accounted for or returned".

However, the healthcare chain refuted the allegations.

"We categorically deny the allegations that 'Auditors have Refused to Sign the Accounts for Q2'. The results for the Q2 could not be tabled before the Board for approval and the same was communicated to the stock exchanges on November 14, 2017," it said.

Yesterday, the company informed stock exchanges that the Singh brothers had resigned as directors from the company's board following the Delhi High Court order upholding the Rs 3,500 crore arbitral award in favour of Daiichi Sankyo.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Fri, February 09 2018. 17:45 IST