Private equity firm MBK paid over $300 mln for Japan elderly care business-source

HONG KONG, Feb 1 (Reuters) - North Asia-focused private equity firm MBK Partners paid over $300 million to wholly acquire Unimat Retirement Community Co (URC), a Japanese elderly care service provider, a person with direct knowledge of the deal told Reuters on Wednesday.

Seoul-based MBK announced the acquisition of URC without disclosing financial details of the deal in a Japanese language press release on Jan. 27, and in a release to Reuters on Wednesday.

MBK described URC as the market leader in short stay care business, which is up to 30 days. It also offers daytime elderly care.

Tokyo-based URC declined to comment.

The URC acquisition marks MBK's latest foray in Japan's elderly care sector. The firm bought Japan's largest daytime care service company Tsukui in 2021 for over $350 million in equity, MBK told a South Korean newspaper at the time.

The investments were made as MBK recognised the high growth potential of Japan's nursing care industry and its social significance, MBK said in the release.

URC and Tsukui are expected to combine their expertise to improve operational efficiency after the latest investment, the firm said.

URC was founded in 1974 and was delisted from the Tokyo Stock Exchange in 2021, according to its website.

It also provides delivery, fitness, life planning and recruitment businesses, the website shows.

MBK focuses on buyouts and special situation investments in China, Japan and Korea, currently with $25.6 billion in capital under management.

Reporting by Kane Wu in Hong Kong; additional reporting by Makiko Yamazaki in Tokyo; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore

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