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Health clinic owner MCI Onehealth Technologies Inc. is looking to list on the Toronto Stock Exchange after rebranding as a technology play amid growing investor interest in digitally focused health care companies.

The Toronto-based company filed a preliminary prospectus for a $30-million initial public offering on Friday. MCI owns 25 medical clinics in Ontario and Alberta, and provides insurance-covered health services, such as physiotherapy and travel immunization, to companies. It is also developing several software products, including an online triage tool for patients and a program to help analyze large sets of patient data.

Over the past nine months of the pandemic, physical-distancing measures have increased demand for online doctors appointments and other telehealth services, such as virtual counselling. This has been a boon for companies that focus on digital health care. The share price of TSX-listed Well Health Technologies Corp. (WELL), which runs a chain of clinics in British Columbia and recently acquired a U.S. telehealth business, is up nearly 350 per cent this year.

Canada’s two largest telemedicine service providers, privately owned Dialogue Technologies Inc. and Maple Corp., have each raised tens of millions of dollars this year from investors including Sun Life Financial Inc. (SLF), Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec and Loblaw Cos Ltd. (L).

The majority of MCI’s revenue still comes from in-person health care at clinics in Calgary and the Greater Toronto Area, which operate under the brand name MCI The Doctor’s Office. This line of business took a significant hit during the pandemic, as walk-in visits dropped approximately 40 per cent year-over-year. The company’s overall revenue was down 20 per cent in the first nine months of 2020, according to its preliminary prospectus.

At the same time, MCI grew its telehealth offerings. MCI doctors conducted 200,000 virtual appointments in the first nine months of the year, up from having “a very small telehealth and virtual care patient base entering 2020,” the prospectus said.

The company is looking to build on this momentum, and has branded itself as “technology enabled, primary care.”

“While not all health care can be delivered virtually, a significant portion certainly can,” MCI’s chief executive, Alexander Dobranowski, and two co-founders, Sven Grail and George Christodoulou, wrote in a letter filed in the prospectus.

The company is also hoping to monetize its patient data by bundling medical information into large anonymized data sets and selling subscriptions to the data. Potential customers include drug makers, medical device manufacturers and university researchers, the prospectus said.

The company, formerly called Altima Healthcare Canada Inc., was formed by Dr. Grail and Dr. Christodoulou, both dentists, who acquired a network of health clinics in Toronto and Calgary in 2012. The pair had previously co-founded the Altima Dental Clinic chain, which operates more than 100 dental clinics in six provinces, according to MCI’s prospectus.

Other backers include technology investor Anthony Lacavera, of Globalive Capital Inc., who is on MCI’s board of directors. The company’s chief financial officer, Scott Nirenberski, was previously chief operating officer of Globalive Technology, a public company founded by Mr. Lacavera.

Canaccord Genuity Group is leading the IPO. Other underwriters include Echelon Wealth Partners Inc., Stifel Nicolaus Canada Inc., TD Securities Inc., Eight Capital, Haywood Securities Inc. and Clarus Securities Inc.

MCI intends to use around half the IPO proceeds for technology development, and around 40 per cent to expand its corporate health care offerings.

The IPO filing comes three days after mental-health telemedicine company MindBeacon Software Inc. filed to go public on the Toronto Stock Exchange with plans to raise $50-million.

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