Formerly a vice president with the World Bank, Armeane Choksi knows the world of international investing. Now, as the chief executive officer of Washington-based Rubicon Capital Investments, his specialty is finding opportunities for investors in the world's "emerging markets."
Those markets--in such places as India, Peru and Venezuela--are increasingly demanding private healthcare services and represent a growing opportunity for investors interested in the healthcare sector.
"With the recent economic liberalizations that have taken place in Latin America and elsewhere, individuals are demanding better healthcare, and national systems can't keep up," says Choksi, 56, who will give courageous healthcare investors a road map during the upcoming "International Summit on the Private Health Sector."
Among the topics Choksi will cover in his session at the conference is how to determine whether a given country represents an unreasonable risk or offers a chance to actually make money.
"There is a concern about corruption in emerging markets, so people want to be careful about that," Choksi said. "They need to make sure project sponsors have demonstrated a track record of management and a reputation for integrity."
The market for private healthcare services in the developing world is a whopping $650 billion, says Choksi, whose 20-year career at the World Bank gave him firsthand experience with helping emerging markets open their economies to private enterprise.
In Peru, for example, Choksi says, "the public health system is falling apart. The poor would rather pay in a private clinic than get free public healthcare because it is so bad."
Peru's government--and the governments of many other developing nations--have neglected the healthcare sector both financially and administratively, Choksi contends. The neglect has given rise to nascent private healthcare markets, which he believes have the potential to bringing investors returns of as much as 30% per year.
Offering some guidance on how to achieve such returns will be the primary focus of Choksi's presentation.
"Many corporations, some extremely large, are lost at sea about what it takes to go into an emerging market," he says.