C & C Alpha Group (CCAG), founded by Bhanu Choudhrie in 2002 as an international private equity firm, has completed the sale of Alpha Hospitals to Cygnet Healthcare for £95m. Alpha Hospitals is the largest provider of specialist psychiatric care in England, working with adults and adolescents who require treatment in a secure setting. It runs state-of-the-art facilities in Bury, Sheffield and Woking with more than 300 beds in total and employs more than 1000 staff.
Launched in 2002 by Patricia Hodgkinson, former CEO of the Florence Nightingale Hospitals Group, Alpha Hospitals was backed by CCAG, whose founder Bhanu Choudhrie joined the Alpha Hospitals board. Ms Hodgkinson’s vision was to deliver outstanding personalised care for adults and children with severe mental health and complex specialist needs in purpose-built facilities, working in partnership with NHS England and local NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups. The first site was opened at a disused hospital in Woking, Surrey, in 2003 and, with CCAG’s financial backing, Alpha Hospitals later expanded to the two other sites. Its turnover was £42.1m for the year ending March 31, 2014.
It has attracted interest from a number of healthcare providers and KPMG were appointed to advise on the company’s strategic options. Cygnet Healthcare’s parent company, Universal Health Services, is one of the largest hospital companies in the US.
“The strong interest we had from potential bidders, and the price we ultimately received, is testament to the strength of the business,” said Bhanu Choudhrie. “CCAG incubated Alpha Hospitals and invested in it for 13 years, allowing it to scale up and grow successfully. I am delighted it will continue to grow under a new owner.
“Our approach is to back management teams which create long-term value. I was on the board at its inception and have always taken a close personal interest in the business. We will now be looking for new investment opportunities in healthcare and other speciality services”.
London-based CCAG has a track record of successfully incubating businesses around the world in healthcare, hospitality, real estate, aviation, utilities and agriculture. Last month, it brokered a deal for a new £150m cancer hospital in London, which will be run by the Abu Dhabi-based VPS Healthcare Group. Ravenscourt Park Hospital will be the first private facility in the UK to offer proton beam therapy and is the first hospital to be re-developed in London for more than 30 years.
About C & C Alpha Group
C & C Alpha Group is an international private equity firm headquartered in London, which also has offices in India. It was established as a holding company for private investors who have been involved in venture capital funding for more than 30 years. By bringing together entrepreneurs, strategy consultants, project managers and financial analysts, it aims to create stakeholder value by organic growth and strategic partnerships. It typically invests £2m-£40m per transaction and takes a mid-to-long-term view of its investments.