Abu Dhabi Aviation reaches for the skies

Abu Dhabi Aviation has seen its shares jump nearly 6% in the space of a week.

  • E-Mail
By  Sarah Matthews Published  March 5, 2006

|~||~||~|Abu Dhabi Aviation has seen its shares jump nearly 6% in the space of a week. FLY HIGH It’s been a good week for Abu Dhabi Aviation. The company, which leases helicopters to both the public and private sector – including providing support to offshore companies – has seen its shares jump nearly 6% in the space of a week. Now valued at US$365 million, word reaches me that a number of big new contracts may be on the way. Watch out for those shares rising, though even today they are still 30% off the value a year ago. KEEP RISING Well done to the team at Ras Al Khaimah Ceramics, which has taken the ceramics industry by storm since it was founded 15 years ago. The company now has a 21% market share, and its market value is getting extremely close to US$1 billion. With the shares up nearly 10% in a week, I doubt we will have to wait much longer before it joins the billionaires league. HEALTHY FEELING A couple of months ago I revealed that UK tourism magnate Steve Purdew is planning to open the world’s largest health club in Dubai. The deal will see Purdew’s luxury health club and spa group Champneys opening its first resort in the emirate. Work on the complex is scheduled to start later this year, forming part of an expansion programme which has seen Champneys targeting opportunities in Asia. “Steve has been thinking about this for a while and is really excited about it,” a friend of his told me recently. Well, it appears that Steve has got more than excited. My sources tell me that he is considering an IPO on the DIFX, which would help him raise cash for the venture. The move to Dubai represents Champneys’ first venture into the Middle East, and the company aims to use it as a springboard into other international markets. It follows the opening in October of the group’s first spa in India, based in Goa’s Intercontinental Grand Resort. Managed and owned by Steve and his mother, Dorothy, the group has built up a string of exclusive spas across the UK. The Hotel de la Paix, a luxury hotel in the traditional Swiss resort of Champéry, was also acquired by the company six years ago, making it the largest destination spa group in the world. Champneys now employs over 2000 people. I very much hope Steve succeeds – he’s a top guy and really deserves to. DOUBLE FAULT British tennis star Tim Henman’s fall from the top continues. As I write this he has managed to make it into the second round of the Dubai Tennis Open, though few people reckon he will get much further. One thing is certain: his cash making machine has hit the breaks. While other stars such as Andre Aggasi and Roger Federer have been offered upto US$150,000 of promotional work while in Dubai, the less than popular Henman has kept a low profile, working out at the Aviation Club. I am told he was offered a T-shirt signing evening at the Emirates Towers, which included a free lift and meal. Needless to say, he turned it down. BIG HITTER I mentioned last week that the US$15billion Dubai Aerospace Enterprise was a fabulous idea – and that my sources are already suggesting the DAE will look for a listing on the DIFX. I hear this could be sooner than expected. Last week DAE were at the Singapore Air Show and agreed a plan to build the world’s first Aviation University. It is already scouring the world for the very best professionals in the industry, and I am told an official announcement could come within the next six weeks. Let’s hope so – this is another great idea, led by Sheikh Ahmed, that deserves to succeed.||**||

Add a Comment

Your display name This field is mandatory

Your e-mail address This field is mandatory (Your e-mail address won't be published)

Security code