With R151bn in its war chest, Naspers splashes out in US

Business

With R151bn in its war chest, Naspers splashes out in US

Tencent cash ploughed into home care for the elderly

Nick Hedley

Naspers’s venture capital arm has taken another bet on the US healthcare technology sector, leading a $50-million investment into Honor Health, which runs a network for home care providers that cater to the elderly.
Thanks to the sale of shares in China’s Tencent and India’s Flipkart, Naspers has a R151-billion war chest at its disposal. The company wants to show investors that it is more than just a proxy for Tencent.“Naspers looks for opportunities that address big societal needs in high-growth markets, and partnered with Honor because they are uniquely addressing these macro-trends while alleviating the strain on health systems and senior care providers,” said Mike Katz, head of US investments at Naspers Ventures.
By 2050, the global population of people over 60 years old was likely to more than double, “creating a pronounced demographic shift around the world”, Katz said. At the same time, disability rates were increasing.
A Naspers Ventures spokesperson said Honor was “one of the fastest-growing, non-medical home care companies in the US”.
In the healthcare segment, Naspers Ventures has also backed a company called the Human Diagnosis Project, which runs an online consultation system aimed at helping doctors to diagnose patients.
Earlier in May, Naspers sold its entire 11.2% stake in Flipkart for $2.2-billion (R28-billion), while it recently sold a portion of its shares in Tencent for HK$77-billion (R123-billion).

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