On offer will be 50 per cent of the company’s SR 8,000 million ($2,133 million) capital, divided into 400 million shares. The General Organisation for Social Insurance (GOSI) and the Pension Fund will each have the option to subscribe to 5 per cent of the shares. The IPO is due to be staged by the end of the year. JP Morgan is acting as lead manager.

Much more imminent is the IPO of shares in Emaar The Economic City. The exact dates have yet to be finalised. A date of 13 May was announced in early May, but was then retracted pending a ministerial resolution. The resolution has now been issued and the IPO is likely to be staged at the end of May or the beginning of June.

For sale will be 455 million shares priced at SR 10 ($2.67) each, equivalent to 30 per cent of the company’s capital. HSBC is the lead manager.

Secondary market volatility is failing to dissuade investors from buying into IPOs. The sale of shares in Saudi Paper Manufacturing Company closed more than six times oversubscribed in early May. On offer was 30 per cent of the company’s SR 240 million ($64 million) capital, divided into 7.2 million shares. Gulf International Bank acted as financial adviser (MEED 21:4:06).