Dar eyes Aston Martin stake sale, $1bn loan
Kuwait , December 14, 2008
Kuwait's Investment Dar said on Sunday it was studying offers to sell up to 20 percent of British carmaker Aston Martin and seeking to borrow up to 300 million dinars ($1.1 billion) from banks to refinance debt.
The Islamic investment firm, which bought half of Aston Martin in 2007, is studying offers to sell 10 to 20 percent in the British luxury carmaker, executive vice-president Amr Abou El-Seoud said.
"We have offers ... we are in talks but the (sale) should be value-added whether financially or technically," Seoud told Reuters.
"It (could) be maximum 10 to 20 percent of the company ... there is 60 to 70 percent chance that we will reach a deal soon."
He added that Dar could sell shares to the public in Aston Martin within three to five years.
Seoud also denied an al-Qabas newspaper report on Sunday that Dar had mortgaged banking and real estate assets, including its 19.2 percent stake in Boubyan Bank, with Commercial Bank of Kuwait to secure financing.
Investment Dar was in talks with several local banks, including CBK, for loans to help it refinance short-term debt, he said. "Ideally we should be seeking around KD200 million to KD300 million from banks," Seoud said.-Reuters