Mexican firm bids for Espirito Santo health unit

miércoles 20 de agosto de 2014 05:01 GYT

LISBON Aug 20 (Reuters) - Mexico's Grupo Angeles Servicios de Saude has made a takeover bid for Espirito Santo Saude (ESS) , the health unit of Portugal's indebted Espirito Santo family.

Grupo Angeles said in a statement late Tuesday it had offered 4.3 euros per share for Espirito Santo Saude, valuing the healthcare leader at about 411 million euros ($546.3 million).

The bid may come as welcome news for the Espirito Santo family, whose main holding companies filed for creditor protection in July under a mountain of debt and need to shed assets.

Espirito Santo Saude, which made no immediate public response to the approach, is owned by Espirito Santo Health Care Investments, a subholding of Rioforte, one of the family's holding companies which filed for creditor protection.

Shares in Espirito Santo Saude were 7.5 percent higher at 4.24 euros in mid-morning trade on Wednesday. Grupo Angeles' bid was launched at a premium of 9 percent to Tuesday's closing price.

Espirito Santo Saude operates 18 health centres in Portugal, including hospitals, clinics and care homes for the elderly.

The problems of the Espirito Santo family has been front page news in Portugal for many months, as their debts also led to the collapse of Banco Espirito Santo (BES), the bank the family founded but lost control of in the past few months.

BES had to be rescued because of its exposure to the family's debts. (1 US dollar = 0.7524 euro) (Reporting by Axel Bugge; Editing by David Holmes)