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PE firms target UK health companies

Private equity firms are positioning to capitalise on the National Health Service’s long waiting lists and other operational challenges by acquiring numerous UK healthcare companies over the past two years, according to a report by the Financial Times.

The report cites data from consultancy LaingBuisson as revealing that, since 2021, buyout groups have struck 150 deals for UK healthcare companies – including ambulance fleets and diagnostics businesses – with the past two years seeing the most activity, in terms of volume, since at least 2014.

According to the report, so far this year, 25 deals have already been agreed despite a wider slowdown in mergers and acquisitions, with buyout firms moving into diagnostics and digital care, where long NHS waiting lists mean patients are often willing to pay fees themselves.

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