Aabar IPO sets new record

The initial public offering of shares in Aabar Petroleum Investments Company has raised a new record of US$107.27 billion

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By  David Robinson Published  April 26, 2005

The initial public offering (IPO) of shares in Aabar Petroleum Investments Company has raised a new record of Dh394 billion ($107.27 billion), according to initial data from The National Investor, financial advisor, sole lead manager and book runner of the issue. TNI's estimates show that the IPO has been oversubscribed by almost 800 times with more than 87,000 subscribers submitting applications for shares. The Dh495 million ($135 million) IPO was open to UAE nationals above 21 and UAE companies. The issue closed on April 23. The capital of Aabar is Dh900 million. High investor demand has resulted in a record oversubscription rate which surpassed the previous GCC record of 448 times by Aldar Properties, another recent IPO joint led managed by TNI. Commenting on the results of the offering, chairman of the founders' committee, Sohail Al Mazrui, said: "The response from investors has been overwhelming and beyond any expectations and I would like to thank the investors for showing strong interest and faith in the company. We have plans to list Aabar on the Abu Dhabi Securities Market in an expedient fashion, as soon as we have incorporated the company. "We have a responsibility to our investors and we will be working hard to deploy the funds in a productive manner so that they can benefit from the growth and success of the company. We are bullish about the prospects of the oil and gas industry and we believe we can capitalize on the existing opportunities by creating the largest listed pan-Arab oilfield services company." From its base in Abu Dhabi, Aabar will be acquiring existing companies in the oil and gas services sector with a particular focus on onshore and offshore drilling in the Middle East region. Even though the oil and gas industry represents the backbone of the region's economies this was one of the few investment opportunities in this sector. The offering, which was lead managed by The National Investor (TNI), the number one lead manager of IPOs in the UAE, illustrated that there is a huge investor appetite for further opportunities in the oil and gas industry. Commenting on the impact on the capital markets, Dr Karim El Solh, CEO, The National Investor, said: "This IPO represents an important milestone in the development of the capital markets. For the first time, it gives investors the opportunity to get exposed to the all important oil and gas industry. Following our recent public offerings in the logistics, real estate, financial services and now oil and gas industry, TNI will continue to introduce new transactions that will broaden the investment universe of local investors. The levels of interest have been beyond our expectations and we are honoured to have been involved in this landmark transaction."-

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