Amlak opens IPO to resident UAE expats

The Dubai-based home loan company is encouraging wider particpation in the Dubai Financial Market by opening up its IPO to a wide swathe of the public.

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By  David Ingham Published  January 15, 2004

Amlak Finance’s forthcoming share subscription offer will be open to all expatriates resident in the UAE as well as Gulf and UAE nationals. Applicants must apply for a minimum of 25,000 shares at the rate of Dhs1 each, but can request an unlimited number of the 412,500,000 that are being made available. The offer will run from January 18 to 28. Once the subscription is complete and shares have been allocated and distributed, Amlak will list on the Dubai Financial Market. Shareholders will be able to trade in the stock immediately. Dubai Islamic Bank, National Bank of Sharjah and Dubai Bank have been appointed as the receiving banks and Shuaa Capital will be the lead manager for the IPO. “This is an exceptionally important and strategic move in the history of Amlak Finance and it was absolutely critical to appoint the highest quality partners to manage the IPO,” said Mohamed Ali Al Hashimi, general manager of Amlak. “We believe that we have done this with the core participating institutions. The three receiving banks are key players in the domestic market with a thorough understanding of the local investment environment and will provide a strong outreach to the community. Our lead manager is a well-known and highly respected financial institution with a critical understanding of the UAE investment climate. We are confident that all four will do an excellent job.” The IPO will see Amlak convert itself into an Islamic financial institution. This, Al Hashimi told ITP.net, will allow the company to tap into the huge pool of regional capital seeking Shariah-compliant investments. Shariah compliance will also allow Amlak to appeal to a wider base of customers. Al Hashimi also confirmed that the company will begin to finance loans on properties made by developers besides Emaar. Geographical expansion is on the agenda, although Al Hashimi would not expand on exact plans, and diversification of the company’s product line is also likely. The share offering is certainly likely to be well received. Listings on the UAE market are few and far between and Amlak is operating in one of the UAE’s hottest growth sectors, real estate. “We believe this transaction will be extremely successful and will be considered as another important step in the continued development of the capital markets in the UAE,” said Ziad Makkawi, executive managing director, Shuaa Capital.

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