Author Topic: KANG - iKang Healthcare  (Read 491 times)

writser

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KANG - iKang Healthcare
« on: September 13, 2018, 01:23:44 PM »
Probably nobody is interested but I'm just throwing this out there. iKang (KANG) is a Chinese healthcare company providing preventive healthcare solutions (dental services, medical examinations, etc). They IPO'd on the NASDAQ in April 2014 (no reverse merger). Just a few months later, in August 2015, the company received a non-binding proposal from the CEO to go private at $17.80. A few months later a competing group offered $22 / ADS. Both proposals went nowhere. In 2016 the company received another proposal, this time from Yunfeng Capital, to take the company private in a $20 - $25 deal. Some time passed - as is common with these Chinese deals - but in March this year the company entered into a a definitive agreement with Yunfeng together with Alibaba to go private at $20.60 / ADS. They entered in a definitive agreement, shareholders voted in favour of this deal, everything was good and shares traded as high as ~$20.50 for months.

However, in August the company said that up to ~32% of shareholders were requesting appraisal rights. The buyers had the right to cancel the deal if more than 15% of all shareholders requested an appraisal. And a few days ago the company announced that they are 're-evaluating the commercial viability of the merger' and requested a four week extension of the termination date. iKang announced that they have to explore financing alternatives because ~$125m in convertible loans are coming due. Understandably the stock cratered, trading as low as $15.50 before rebounding to ~$17 as of now.

First of all, this is an interesting dynamic, in some of these lowball Chinese mergers a lot of shareholders are asking for appraisal rights. JA Solar was another deal that was delayed (but eventually completed) because there were too many dissenting shareholders. Something to think about in the future.

My gut tells me there's a decent chance that the deal will still go through. Alibaba should have deep pockets, they were already willing to go to court with 15% of the shareholders, is the extra 15% really a deal-breaker? On top of that, by playing hardball and threatening to cancel the deal the buyers can maybe coerce some dissenting shareholders into accepting a settlement or dropping the lawsuit. On the other hand, if 30% of the shareholders go to court and the court decides fair value is $40 / ADS then the transaction will end up significantly more expensive for the buying group (however you could argue that in that case they still pay ~$26 / share for something that the court says is worth $40).

Does anybody have experience with appraisals? Can I follow the court proceedings somewhere? Is it possible for the dissenting shareholders to drop their lawsuit and / or accept a settlement? I don't have a position in iKang - just trying to think about how to approach this situation. For now it is in the 'too hard' basket but if it trades at $15 the market is quite pessimistic. Seems to me a quick close of the deal (and a small sweetener for the dissenting shareholders) is probably a good outcome for a lot of parties. Bit of game theory at work here.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.
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mjohn707

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Re: KANG - iKang Healthcare
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2018, 01:46:11 PM »
Probably nobody is interested but I'm just throwing this out there. iKang (KANG) is a Chinese healthcare company providing preventive healthcare solutions (dental services, medical examinations, etc). They IPO'd on the NASDAQ in April 2014 (no reverse merger). Just a few months later, in August 2015, the company received a non-binding proposal from the CEO to go private at $17.80. A few months later a competing group offered $22 / ADS. Both proposals went nowhere. In 2016 the company received another proposal, this time from Yunfeng Capital, to take the company private in a $20 - $25 deal. Some time passed - as is common with these Chinese deals - but in March this year the company entered into a a definitive agreement with Yunfeng together with Alibaba to go private at $20.60 / ADS. They entered in a definitive agreement, shareholders voted in favour of this deal, everything was good and shares traded as high as ~$20.50 for months.

However, in August the company said that up to ~32% of shareholders were requesting appraisal rights. The buyers had the right to cancel the deal if more than 15% of all shareholders requested an appraisal. And a few days ago the company announced that they are 're-evaluating the commercial viability of the merger' and requested a four week extension of the termination date. iKang announced that they have to explore financing alternatives because ~$125m in convertible loans are coming due. Understandably the stock cratered, trading as low as $15.50 before rebounding to ~$17 as of now.

First of all, this is an interesting dynamic, in some of these lowball Chinese mergers a lot of shareholders are asking for appraisal rights. JA Solar was another deal that was delayed (but eventually completed) because there were too many dissenting shareholders. Something to think about in the future.

My gut tells me there's a decent chance that the deal will still go through. Alibaba should have deep pockets, they were already willing to go to court with 15% of the shareholders, is the extra 15% really a deal-breaker? On top of that, by playing hardball and threatening to cancel the deal the buyers can maybe coerce some dissenting shareholders into accepting a settlement or dropping the lawsuit. On the other hand, if 30% of the shareholders go to court and the court decides fair value is $40 / ADS then the transaction will end up significantly more expensive for the buying group (however you could argue that in that case they still pay ~$26 / share for something that the court says is worth $40).

Does anybody have experience with appraisals? Can I follow the court proceedings somewhere? Is it possible for the dissenting shareholders to drop their lawsuit and / or accept a settlement? I don't have a position in iKang - just trying to think about how to approach this situation. For now it is in the 'too hard' basket but if it trades at $15 the market is quite pessimistic. Seems to me a quick close of the deal (and a small sweetener for the dissenting shareholders) is probably a good outcome for a lot of parties. Bit of game theory at work here.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.

No thoughts to add here about the situation, but I think you're right that if it involves Alibaba it must be a decent offer, even considering the recent issues they've had and all.  Seems interesting though
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Hielko

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Re: KANG - iKang Healthcare
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2018, 04:22:59 AM »
Quote
Does anybody have experience with appraisals? Can I follow the court proceedings somewhere? Is it possible for the dissenting shareholders to drop their lawsuit and / or accept a settlement?
I don't think there is anything yet that you can follow. A court case will only start after the merger has been completed, and I doubt that the company can legally already offer some people more/share than other shareholders while the merger hasn't closed.

Spekulatius

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Re: KANG - iKang Healthcare
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2018, 04:34:22 AM »
I would only play arbitrage, when I didnít mind owning and iKang isnít a stock that I would want to own after a quick review. The balance sheet and the deteriorating income statement are not encouraging.
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