Vikram Vuppala, NephroPlus

NephroPlus, India’s largest dialysis network and a pioneer in redefining dialysis care in India, signed an INR 69.5 Crores financing package with Asian Development Bank (ADB) to further its expansion plans in Uzbekistan for building four large dialysis centres. The transaction is a broader partnership with the Ministry of Health, the Republic of Uzbekistan, after securing a contract worth $100M, where NephroPlus will independently commission and operationalize these centres.

The transaction comprises a loan of up to INR 41.7  Crores from ADB’s ordinary capital resources and administration by ADB of a loan of up to INR 27.8 Crores from Leading Asia’s Private Infrastructure Fund (LEAP).

NephroPlus will primarily use the funds to design, build, operate and maintain the dialysis centres in Tashkent city, the Republic of Karakalpakstan, and the Khorezm region. Notably, the dialysis centre in Tashkent, with 160 machines capacity, will be the largest dialysis centre in the World.

NephroPlus India

NephroPlus will provide it’s highly recognized quality dialysis care to over 1,100 patients in Uzbekistan. It has established a 100% owned local subsidiary to operate the centres for this project. In addition, it intends to implement its RenAssure™ protocols to deliver a synchronized and convenient patient experience in Uzbekistan. An estimated 30,000 patients currently suffer from Kidney failure in Uzbekistan, with an estimated shortage of over 3,500 dialysis machines in the country.

Speaking on the transaction with ADB, Mr. Vikram Vuppala, Founder and CEO, NephroPlus, said, “Our ambition to extend high-quality dialysis services in Uzbekistan is inspired by our vision to enable people on dialysis across the World lead long, happy and productive lives. We are pleased to introduce peritoneal dialysis for the very first time in Uzbekistan to improve access to dialysis for pediatric patients and also patients in rural areas. We are happy to be the private partner for Uzbekistan’s first international health care PPP and to embark on a relationship with an international financier such as ADB as we continue to grow our operations.”

Under this deal, ADB will also support NephroPlus in enhancing and implementing a gender action plan to increase women’s participation in technical and skilled work in dialysis treatment centres through specific training pieces and strengthen gender equality measures in its working environment. As a result, NephroPlus ensures that women make up half the personnel trained to use dialysis machines and conduct dialysis treatment across its global network.

“Dialysis allows people with kidney failure to lead productive lives. Unfortunately, the need for dialysis services in Uzbekistan has far outstripped supply, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic so this project will improve the availability and accessibility of much-needed dialysis services in the country. This project demonstrates how the private sector can play a role in closing the critical gaps in health care service delivery.” said ADB’s Private Sector Operations Department Investment Specialist Amanda Tan.