Mena IPO activity doubles in first half

26 September 2017

Region sees strongest first-half performance since 2007

During the first half of 2017, the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region saw 16 initial public offerings (IPOs), which raised $788m in capital combined, the UK’s Ernst & Young (EY) says in a report published today. This compares with eight in the same period in 2016, and marks the strongest first-half performance since 2007. The total value raised, however, is down 21 per cent year-on-year.

The biggest flotation was the cross-border IPO of ADES International Holding, which raised $243.5m on the London Stock Exchange. The oil and gas drilling and production services firm is based in Dubai International Financial Centre. The second-largest was Investment Holding Group, which raised $135m on the Qatar Exchange. Of the 16 IPOs, nine worth a total of $200.5m were on Saudi Arabia’s Nomu, a parallel equity market launched in February this year with lighter listing requirements than the main stock exchange, the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul).

The GCC saw 13 IPOs in the first half of 2017, a 33 per cent increase on the number of deals in the same period last year. However, the deal value declined by 6 per cent to $700m.

EY expects global IPO activity to continue to strengthen in the second half of the year on the back of improved investor sentiment and a more positive outlook for the world economy. The accountancy firm says the privatisation of government assets is likely to be the key driver for Mena IPO activity in the remainder of 2017 and 2018.


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