3309.HK

The latest: C-Mer Eye Care Holdings Ltd. (3309.HK) announced on Thursday it agreed to purchase 55% of lens distributor Apollo Lens Co. Ltd. for 50.49 million yuan ($71.2 million).

Looking up: The acquisition will allow Hong Kong-based C-Mer to immediately establish its presence in the prescription lens development and distribution market in mainland China, drawing on Apollo’s large operation there.

Take Note: C-Mer plans to pay the seller using a bond certificate with principal amount of 50.49 million yuan for three years and an interest rate of 2% per annum.

Digging Deeper: Founded in 2012 by renowned Hong Kong ophthalmologist Dennis Lam, C-Mer Eye Care is a leading eye care chain in China’s Greater Bay Area centered on the Pearl Delta in Guangdong province. It operated nine eye hospitals covering five key cities in the region as of the end of last year. While it lost money last year, the company’s management noted that its operations in mainland China improved significantly in the first quarter of this year after China relaxed its Covid controls last December. It said some operations have even returned to pre-pandemic levels.

Market Reaction: C-Mer shares rose on Friday, closing up 2.1% at HK$3.99 by the midday break. The stock now trades in the middle of its 52-week range.

Translation by Jony Ho

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