Empower becomes world's largest listed district cooling services provider, shares surge 2.25% on debut

Dubai - Dubai's district cooling provider shares rise 9% to Dh1.45 in early trading on the DFM, giving it a market value of about Dh14.5 billion ($3.95 billion)



Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, chairman of Empower, ringing the DFM market opening bell to celebrate the listing, in the presence of Helal Al Marri, chairman of the DFM; Ahmad bin Shafar, chief executive officer of Empower, and Hamed Ali, CEO of the DFM and Nasdaq Dubai. — Supplied photo
Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, chairman of Empower, ringing the DFM market opening bell to celebrate the listing, in the presence of Helal Al Marri, chairman of the DFM; Ahmad bin Shafar, chief executive officer of Empower, and Hamed Ali, CEO of the DFM and Nasdaq Dubai. — Supplied photo
by

Muzaffar Rizvi

Published: Tue 15 Nov 2022, 2:58 PM

Last updated: Tue 15 Nov 2022, 6:44 PM

Emirates Central Cooling Systems Corporation, popularly known as Empower, surged on its Dubai debut following an initial public offering that attracted $34 billion in orders.

Empower shares, which started trading under the ticker symbol ‘EMPOWER’, climbed as much as nine per cent above the company's listing price as the company made its debut on the Dubai Financial Market on Tuesday.

Dubai's district cooling provider shares rose to Dh1.45 in early trading on the DFM, giving it a market value of about Dh14.5 billion ($3.95 billion). Shares consolidated their position in late session and ended 2.25 per cent at Dh1.36 with 298.65 million shares exchanged hands in broadly negative market which closed 0.6 per cent, or 20.51 points, down at 3,373.87 points on Tuesday.

This is the fourth public offering and listing on the DFM in 2022 to date. It is part of the accelerating steps to implement Dubai’s strategy which aims to develop its capital markets.

Shareholders — Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) and Emirates Power Investment, sold two billion shares — a 20 per cent stake — at Dh1.33 each. The offering size was increased to a 20 per cent stake from 10 per cent because of strong investor demand.

Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, chairman of Empower, rang the DFM market opening bell to celebrate the listing, in the presence of Helal Al Marri, chairman of the DFM; Ahmad bin Shafar, chief executive officer of Empower, and Hamed Ali, CEO of the DFM and Nasdaq Dubai.

“Dubai is moving steadily to become a leading global economic hub. Empower’s IPO further reiterates Dubai’s focus towards building robust capital markets and accelerating new listings that unlock value and growth in vital sectors,” Al Tayer said.

Empower drives market

Empower’s successful IPO that raised Dh2.66 billion giving a market capitalisation of Dh13.3 billion on admission with a share price of Dh1.33 at the upper end of the floatation price range. The company has increased the size of the offering by 100 per cent to cater to the strong demand that led to the IPO being covered on its first day. Accordingly, the offering was oversubscribed by 47 times as it drew a total of Dh124.69 billion ($34 billion). Empower shares trade within the Utilities Sector.

“It’s a privilege to be part of Dubai’s successful privatisation programme and broader efforts to deepen and broaden our stock markets by attracting foreign investment. The oversubscription levels illustrate not just what a great investment case Empower is, but the enduring allure of Dubai’s history, progress and longer term economic vision,” Ahmad bin Shafar said.

Empower's IPO is part of Dubai's drive to list 10 state-owned companies and increase the size of its financial market to about Dh3 trillion, as well as set up a Dh2 billion market maker fund to encourage the listing of more private companies from sectors such as energy, logistics and retail.

DFM most active market globally

Helal Al Marri welcomed Empower to DFM and said it is another important moment in Dubai’s ambitious programme to develop its capital markets.

“The DFM has become one of the most active financial markets globally in terms of new IPOs and listings this year. This momentum underscores the sound fundamentals of the economy in Dubai and the UAE and investors’ deep confidence,” Al Marri said.

Empower, which was set up as a joint venture in 2003 to provide energy through its various plants to the emirate's property sector, has become the world’s largest district cooling services provider, with 84 plant rooms and a network that is more than 350 kilometres long, according to its website.

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Dubai is thriving

Hamed Ali said Dubai is a thriving, dynamic international financial centre full of opportunities as its economy is quickly evolving and its world class markets are increasingly attracting international and national investments by both retail and institutional investors.

“Our capital markets are quickly deepening and diversifying. The listing of Empower underscores the sustained momentum of IPOs on DFM year to date, as the new issuers raised Dh33.4 billion and attracted a record level of subscribed funds totaled Dh659.2 billion,” he said.

No price limit on debut

The DFM applied no price limits on the shares during the first day of trading, as they will be applied from the second day of listing. It is noteworthy that the DFM investor base has exceeded one million for the first time ever by the end of September 2022. The number of new investors has increased 41 times to 155,060 investors.

Empower has a capacity of more than 1.64 million refrigeration tonnes and serves more than 140,000 corporate and individual consumers in more than 1,252 buildings. The company retains more than a 76 per cent market share in Dubai’s district cooling sector, according to its website.

Key Takeaways

• Empower becomes the 4th listing on the DFM this year as Dubai continues to be a bright spot for IPOs globally

• Shares surge 3.75% on debut and close the day at Dh1.38

• IPO part of Dubai’s plans to develop its capital markets

• Oversubscription level of 47x reflects deep confidence of the global investment community

• Total value of raised funds through IPOs on the market reached to Dh33.4 billion this year

• The four IPOs attracted a record level of subscribed funds totaled Dh659.2 billion

—muzaffarrizvi@khaleejytimes.com


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