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Canadian pension fund gets CCI nod to acquire stake in PharmEasy’s parent

Canadian pension fund Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), is set to acquire a 2% stake in PharmEasy’s parent company API Holdings, after receiving nod from the Competition Commission of India (CCI). Details of the deal, including the financials, are yet to be revealed, but CCI said the acquisition also comes with “certain additional rights”.

CDPQ acts as an institutional investor that manages funds primarily for public and para-public pension and insurance plans. It manages and serves more than 40 depositors which comprise public and private pension and insurance funds in Quebec, Canada.

In September 2020, the CCI had approved the merger of MedLife with PharmEasy. As part of the deal, API Holdings—PharEasy’s parent—will acquire a 100% stake in MedLife; in return, MedLife will acquire a 19.9% in the combined entity.

Before that, Reliance Retail had acquired a 60% stake in the Vitalic Health, parent company of Chennai-based NetMeds. The deal granted Reliance Retail 100% ownership of Vitalic’s subsidiaries NetMeds Marketplace, Tresara Health, and Dadha Pharma Distribution. Amazon had also launched their online pharmacy in Bangalore, and began taking orders for prescription-based and over-the-counter medicines, “basic health devices”, and Ayurveda medication.

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