5 years later. So now Pantai Holdings Bhd, the Malaysian healthcare group run by Singaporeans since 2005, plans to sell its Malaysian government concession businesses "as it seeks to focus on growing its hospital business". Or so according to the Business Times here.
I'm not going to venture too deep into Pantai this time. Back in 2005, the front-page reports run by The Malay Mail back then were a major reason for my eventual departure from the NSTP group. When I started Bru mid 2006, I was able to give this debacle the space it deserved (click here here here here for samples of my past postings on this subject). Wasn't enough to save it, though.
Still, I'm obliged now to ask some pertinent questions:1. What?! They only realised after 5 years that the 2 government concessions were under foreign hands?Nor Mohamed Yakcob was the Finance Minister 2 then, boleh tolong jawab? Or Chua Soi Lek, the then Health Minister? Someone, please shed some light.
2. Isn't the sale of Fomema and Medivest (both profitable) is an ominous sign that the hospitals are not doing well?
3. What's not mentioned anywhere in the article is that although Parkway owns 40% of Pantai, this Singapore group has total management control and is paid a handsome fee to run Pantai. Why?