December 3, 2022

Ambulance operator MUrgency takes over Ziqitza Healthcare for $110 million

NEW DELHI: MUrgency Global Services, the ambulance service provider backed by Ratan Tata, SD Shibulal, Kris Gopalakrishnan and a host of other investors, on Friday said it has bought out city-based operator Ziqitza Healthcare at an enterprise value of USD 110 million.

Founded by Shaffi Mather, a former executive of Reliance Industries in San Francisco and Kochi, MUrgency Global Services — the largest in the ambulance services firm in the country and the UAE and also the largest outside the US and Europe– has entered into definitive share purchase agreements with a set of investors of Ziqitza Health Care, MUrgency said in a statement, without disclosing the valuation.

Sources in the know of the deal told PTI that the deal values the private sector emergency medical response and transportation firm (branded as Life Support Ambulance Service) at USD 110 million at an enterprise level. Post-deal, Mather and MUrgency will have majority shareholdings in Ziqitza.

Ziqitza was also founded by Mather but he was a minority investor.

MUrgency is also backed by three of the world’s leading emergency medical transportation and life support ambulance service companies from the USA and Europe.

It is the largest in the world outside the US and Europe with a revenue of Rs 700 crore and net income of Rs 55 crore as per its FY22 financial results. The other major domestic investor in MUrgency is Wipro chairman Rishad Premji.

MUrgency operates over 3,600 ambulances manned by 12,000 employees and ferry over 15,000 patients daily across 28 states in the country, apart from ferrying patients across the UAE.

The major seller in Ziqitza is New York-based Acumen Fund, and after the deal, the only external investor in the firm (holding 10.71 per cent) will be the US-based Global Medical Response Inc. Mather told PTI from his Kochi office.

Global Medical Response is the world’s largest ambulance services firm with a revenue of USD 8 billion last year, and is fully owned by PE major KKR, he said.

The other exiting investors are HDFC, IDFC First Bank and founders of True North Private Equity (in their personal capacity). Acumen had invested in Ziqitza both in series A and B rounds.

After the transaction MUrgency will be taking both board and management control of Ziqitza, while Mather will be the non-executive chairman of the merged entity and Sweta Mangal will be the group chief executive.

Ziqitza has till date transported over 50 million patients. It operates ambulances in the UAE and will soon be entering the Gulf region (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, and the UAE), Mather said.

SD Associates, Mumbai was the legal advisor to MUrgency and ANB Legal Mumbai was the financial advisor for the transaction.

Other investors in MUrgency include Thieny Porte of JC Flowers, Vish Narain (ex-TPG Growth) and Prof Tarun Khanna of Harvard Business School.

Source: Press Trust of India

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