Arun Kumar, the reclusive millionaire promoter of pharmaceuticals company Strides Arcolab, is now eyeing the medical equipment business, even as he looks to sell the flagship injectables business in Strides Arcolab for about $800 million.
Kumar has acquired a minority stake in Skanray Technologies, a Mysore-based medical devices company that specialises in high-frequency X-ray systems, dental digital X-ray and imaging, cardiology, critical care products and remote health monitoring.
It is understood Kumar has invested $3 million in Skanray as an early stage investor. He is also expected to back the company’s growth. Two investment bankers privy to Kumar’s plans said it was possible he would invest an additional $20 million, which would be leveraged for a niche acquisition in the European market.
Kumar confirmed his investment in Skanray Technologies, but declined to comment on its expansion plans. “I am not aware of any additional acquisitions Skanray is currently making. The company has its own growth strategies and its abilities to raise cash and, therefore, I have no comments to make on speculation the company is in an acquisition mode or on whether I am willing to back such an investment,” Kumar said.
Earlier, Skanray Technologies had received funding from the Technology Development Board under the central government for commercialisation of the high-frequency X-ray generator and the vital sign monitor technology. The company had developed an innovative X-ray shielding technology, which reduced the radiation to extremely low levels without using excessive lead for shielding. High-frequency generators developed by Skanray are capable of generating very stable X-rays that can be precisely controlled and pulsed for reducing doses. High frequency X-ray generators are primarily imported in India. These are very expensive and not affordable for primary health care.