July 17 2018

LeapFrog acquires majority stake in Ascent Meditech, a leading Indian medical products company

  • Ascent Meditech is a leading Indian medical products company and distributor of niche consumer healthcare products, with a focus on orthopedics, pain and wound care. Today products are sold to seven million customers annually via 150,000 retail points
  • Its flagship brand, Flamingo, is one of the most popular consumer health brands in India. The company also exports products to 40 countries in Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
  • The investment will tap into the $100 billion Indian healthcare market, which is expected to grow at 12-15% CAGR, and help Ascent capitalise on the significant export market opportunity: $4 trillion of global health expenditure is projected to come from emerging economies by 2022
  • This investment builds on LeapFrog’s success investing in consumer-focused healthcare companies, including East Africa’s largest pharmacy brand, Goodlife Pharmacy

London 17 July 2018:

LeapFrog Investments (“LeapFrog”), the leading investor in companies that deliver healthcare and financial services for emerging consumers, has acquired a majority stake in Ascent Meditech (“Ascent”), the health company behind the market-leading Flamingo brand. The company’s products are currently sold to seven million customers, with a focus on providing high quality and competitively priced orthopaedics to India’s aging population.

Ascent, which has built a sophisticated manufacturing, distribution and retail strategy, specialises in wound care, mobility aids and orthopaedic soft goods. The company sold 15 million products in 2017 through its extensive network of 150,000 retail pharmacy points across 12 Indian States. Ascent’s flagship brand of products, Flamingo, is sold in more than 40 countries across the globe.

Over 80% of Ascent products are for treatment for orthopaedic disorders, which affect over 200 million people in India. The share of India’s population over the age of 60 is projected to increase from 8% today to 19% by 2050. Elderly populations tend to have a higher prevalence of orthopaedic ailments, preferring less invasive solutions to surgery.

Felix Olale, Partner and Global Co-Lead for Health Investments at LeapFrog, commented: “The Ascent Meditech team has achieved outstanding growth in the orthopaedic and wound care market, addressing a core need for consumers with high quality products and competitive prices, thus opening up accessibility. We see a huge opportunity for LeapFrog to partner with an outstanding management team to increase production and distribution of Ascent’s quality and trusted products, including the flagship Flamingo brand, in India, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.”

The investment in Ascent will capitalise on the favourable dynamics in both the domestic and international markets. The $100 billion Indian healthcare market is expected to expand at 12-15% CAGR. Outside of India, the global market for orthopaedics and prosthetics spend is expected to reach $806.7m by 2020, more than double that of 2014, according to a report by Deloitte.

LeapFrog will leverage its deep expertise in healthcare and emerging consumer insights to support Ascent’s growth plans and will create additional value through continuing to strengthen the Flamingo brand. This will be achieved by utilising LeapFrog-generated consumer insights to develop additional consumer-focused products, while also expanding Ascent’s presence in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia by leveraging LeapFrog’s network in these geographies.

Rajiv Mistry, CEO at Ascent Meditech, commented: “We are delighted to partner with LeapFrog Investments, who share our vision of opening up access to quality and affordable healthcare products and continuing to grow this market leading and trusted brand. Ascent Meditech will benefit greatly from LeapFrog’s extensive network, as the company enters its next phase of growth.”

This investment builds on LeapFrog’s track record in the Indian market and on LeapFrog’s decade of experience in partnering with emerging market businesses to provide health insurance to emerging consumers. The company has successfully conducted six full and partial exits from key Indian brands including Mahindra Insurance Brokers, Magma Fincorp, and Northern Arc (formerly IFMR Capital) over the last 19 months. Health exits include global mobile health insurance provider BIMA to Allianz X, and West African life and health insurance provider Express Life, to Prudential PLC.

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