Coal miner Banpu invests 5.3 billion baht in US healthcare fund to diversify beyond energy sector

Banpu Plc (BANPU), a Thailand-based energy company, announced a 5.3-billion-baht investment in the US healthcare fund, a move to widen its portfolio outside the energy sector and seek long-term gains.

The company notified the Stock Exchange of Thailand(SET) on Tuesday of the investment via its subsidiary Banpu Ventures Ltd in “Public US based healthcare investment fund.”

Chief executive Somruedee Chaimongkol, said that the advancement of healthcare technology would accelerate in response to future customer demands to improve personal wellness. 

“Banpu regards the US Healthcare sector as an appealing market,”  Somruedee said, citing the vast market size, high growth rate, and ongoing innovation. She also noted the possibility of generating long-term returns.

This move is part of Banpu’s portfolio expansion in search of new solid growth prospects “outside of the energy landscape,” she added. 

Banpu’s three core business segments are energy resource, energy generation, and energy technology. 

The majority of revenue comes from its thermal coal mining businesses in Indonesia and Australia, which have benefited from the hikes in commodity prices in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

In the first quarter of 2021, Banpu reported a net profit of 310.5 million baht, up 510 per cent from a year earlier, driven by rising global commodity prices. 

Banpu shares traded at 12.30 baht as of the morning session, up 0.8 per cent from its prior closing. The current price is 15 per cent below its one-year peak of 14.90 baht in October last year. 

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