Renuka Ramnath’s resignation from panel likely to further delay Fortis sale | business news | Hindustan Times
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Renuka Ramnath’s resignation from panel likely to further delay Fortis sale

Last week, Fortis Healthcare had approved evaluation of only binding offers and formed an expert committee to evaluate the proposals and make a final recommendation by April 26.

business Updated: Apr 25, 2018 23:49 IST
Swaraj Singh Dhanjal
Swaraj Singh Dhanjal
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Renuka Ramnath
Renuka Ramnath(Mint File)

The already complicated bidding process for control of Fortis Healthcare Ltd received a jolt on Wednesday evening after Renuka Ramnath, a member of the advisory committee set up to recommend the most suitable suitor for the company, resigned.

Ramnath, founder and managing partner of Multiples Alternate Asset Management (Multiples PE), was part of a committee headed by former PwC India chairman Deepak Kapoor to evaluate binding bids received for the healthcare chain. Lalit Bhasin, president of Society of Indian Law Firms, is also part of the three-member panel.

The advisory committee was expected to evaluate the bids at its meeting on April 25, and give its recommendations to the board the next day. Ramnath’s resignation is expected to further delay the sale process.

“It is hereby informed that the company has today received a resignation of Ms. Renuka Ramnath wherein she excused herself from being the member of the committee due to her pre-occupation. The same will be tabled before the Board at the scheduled meeting on 26 April 2018 for their consideration and vacancy so caused shall be filled, by the Board of Directors, with a person of eminent repute,” the company said in an exchange filing.

While the company cited pre-occupation as a reason for Ramnath’s resignation, there is speculation that the move could have stemmed from her business relationship with one of the bidders for the asset.

According to documents accessed by Mint from the Registrar of Companies (RoC), Sunil Kant Munjal, who along with the Burman family has placed a Rs 1,500 crore binding bid for Fortis, is an investor in Ramnath’s Multiples PE. Documents filed with the RoC show that Munjal has committed Rs 10 crore to Multiples’ second private equity fund. RoC documents also show that over half of the capital commitment has already been drawn down to make investments.

Meanwhile, a day ahead of the bidding deadline for control of Fortis Heathcare Ltd, the Manipal Hospital Enterprises Ltd-TPG Capital combine submitted a revised bid offering to infuse Rs 750 crore upfront and a new deal structure that would help mitigate the indebtedness at the firm. The combine also offered a higher premium than they had done previously. Manipal had earlier said that it was not willing to raise the valuation. The last minute submission of binding offers by other contenders has prompted it to raise the bid.

(Malvika Joshi contributed to this story)