IPO market for UAE, region looking strong, say experts

In 2022, around $22 billion were raised through public offerings in the region, out of which $8 billion were raised in Dubai



Emiratis work on the floor of the Dubai Financial Market in Dubai. Last year was phenomenal for Dubai equity and capital markets with IPO coming from the emirate’s top-notch companies including Salik Company, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority and Tecom Group. — AP file photo
Emiratis work on the floor of the Dubai Financial Market in Dubai. Last year was phenomenal for Dubai equity and capital markets with IPO coming from the emirate’s top-notch companies including Salik Company, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority and Tecom Group. — AP file photo
by

Waheed Abbas

Published: Mon 23 Jan 2023, 5:55 PM

The IPO pipeline is looking strong for 2023 as well following a large number of companies going public last year, industry executives said on Monday.

In 2022, around $22 billion were raised through public offerings in the region, out of which $8 billion were raised in Dubai.

Last year was phenomenal for Dubai equity and capital markets with IPO coming from the emirate’s top-notch companies including Salik Company, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority and Tecom Group. All the IPOs witnessed strong demand from both retail and institutional investors, resulting in overbookings.

Mohammed Al Bastaki, CEO, Emirates NBD Capital, said IPO momentum will continue this year.
Mohammed Al Bastaki, CEO, Emirates NBD Capital, said IPO momentum will continue this year.

Mohammed Al Bastaki, CEO, Emirates NBD Capital, said the momentum that started last year will continue in 2023.

“We see strong activity in 2023 as the privatisation programme continues. As the private sector, family-owned businesses and the Dubai Economic Agenda “D33” evolve, they will have impacts on the market,” Al Bastaki said during the panel discussion on the first day of the inaugural Mena IPO Summit.

Shaikha Almarri, head of government and corporate, HSBC, said the healthy IPO pipeline reflects that companies have access to capital markets.

Shaikha Almarri, head of government and corporate, HSBC.
Shaikha Almarri, head of government and corporate, HSBC.

“Dubai is a diverse economy and provides interesting stories for companies to set up here with healthy capital markets to back economic activity,” said Almarri.

Saeed Al Awar, head of the Middle East, managing director, Rothschild & Co, also expects the momentum to continue this year.

“We are positive on the capital market. Globally, we are hoping for less volatility and more stable rates.”

Ali Khalpey, head of equity capital markets, EFG Hermes, said 2022 ended with strong issuances and market performance was exciting.

Ali Khalpey, head of equity capital markets, EFG Hermes.
Ali Khalpey, head of equity capital markets, EFG Hermes.

“We continue to see a strong pipeline of companies for IPOs in the UAE and region. The second half is going to be more encouraging for us,” he said during the panel discussion.

International firms to list

Emirates NBD Capital’s Mohammed Al Bastaki expects international companies to look at listing in Dubai as the emirate offers the best logistics capabilities, access to talent and further development in regulatory frameworks.

“We see a lot of fund managers to set up in Dubai as well.”

Saeed Al Awar, head of Middle East, managing director, Rothschild & Co, said this year will see volatility stabilising and the region continue to be a safe haven politically, unlike Europe which is experiencing strikes in different countries.

“Growth of foreign direct investment is significant and the region as a whole is growing at a meaningful rate when the world is feared to go through recession… There are multiple international companies that are headquartered in Dubai and there is no reason those companies should not be listed on the Dubai bourse,” Al Awar added.

— waheedabbas@khaleejtimes.com


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