Healthscope in likely IPO

Private equity owners fielding proposals from several investment banks.

The private equity owners of Healthscope are considering launching an initial public offer within the next six months, after the company posted an improved second-half performance across each of its businesses, the Australian reports.

The hospital giant said operating profit jumped 8% to $328 million in the previous financial year, on revenue of $2.2 billion - up 4.5% on the previous corresponding period.

While Mr Cooke declined to confirm speculation of an impending public float, the Australian understands the company's owners, TPG Capital and Carlyle Group, have been fielding proposals from several investment banks.

The appointment of an adviser could be announced within weeks, industry sources told the newspaper, with exit options likely to consider a trade sale as well as an IPO.