Australia's Healthscope considering IPO, trade sale and property trust

SYDNEY Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:15pm EST

SYDNEY Jan 29 (Reuters) - Australian hospital operator Healthscope Ltd is considering three options for a sale process - an initial public offering (IPO), selling to a trade buyer or a property trust, the managing director said on Wednesday.

Healthscope's private equity owners - TPG and Carlyle Group - had begun the first stage of a A$4 billion ($3.51 billion) sale by inviting banks to pitch for a role in the process, the Australian Financial Review reported.

The company is considering three options for the sale, with no bank appointed yet, managing director Rob Cooke said.

"Definitely we will look at an IPO, maybe a trade buyer, another one is also to sell into a property trust. So three options are under consideration," Cooke said.

It was a good time for a sale, Cooke added, noting high demand for healthcare companies like Ramsay Health Care Ltd .

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