Italian pharmacy network Hippocrates Holding said on Monday that private equity firm Antin Infrastructure Partners had agreed to take an 80% stake in the company.

The pharmacy group short-listed four bidders in October for its network of pharmacies with the aim of finding a majority investor to speed up growth, sources told Reuters.

Antin infrastructure Partner would become a “long-term strategic partner”, Hippocrates said in a statement. A spokeswoman for Hippocrates said that Antin will buy a stake of about 80% from private investors.

Hippocrates founders Rodolfo Guarino and Davide Tavaniello will stay on as chief executives and shareholders of the company, which controls more than 120 pharmacies in Italy and generates annual revenues of more than 200 million euros ($236.84 million).

The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021, Hippocrates said without providing details on the value of the transaction.

Nine non-binding bids originally submitted valued the group at more than 600 million euros.

Source: Reuters

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