Al Hilal launches first global sukuk fund
Abu Dhabi, February 18, 2012
Al Hilal Bank, an Islamic bank owned by the Abu Dhabi Investment Council, has announced the launch of its first sukuk fund that caters to high demand for low-risk Shariah-compliant investment.
The new offering, Al Hilal Global Sukuk Fund, reaffirms the Abu Dhabi bank’s full commitment to product and service innovation and its keen interest in strategic segments of the financial services sector.
The flagship fixed-income fund’s objective is to generate regular income as well as achieve capital appreciation by investing in globally-diversified Shariah-compliant fixed-income securities (sukuk) issued by sovereign, quasi-sovereign and corporate organizations, said a satement from the bank, said a senior official.
“We are excited to offer a Shariah-compliant investment opportunity that provides regular income and relatively low-risk exposure. The fund offers an attractive alternative to other investment options with comparable risk profiles,' remarked CEO Mohamed Jamil Berro.
'It also raises Al Hilal’s profile as a progressive bank that offers thoughtfully-planned investment solutions,' he stated.
According to him, the structure of the fund is open-ended and the initial offering period will last for one month beginning from February 19.
'Investors will be able to allot a minimum subscription of $10,000 at an initial NAV of $10 per unit, representing one of the market’s lowest subscription amounts, he said.
Al Hilal Bank will act as the fund sponsor while CIMB Principal Islamic Asset Management will serve as the investment advisor for the sukuk fund.
CIMB is a dedicated Islamic global institutional asset management organization with a proven track record of managing fixed-income and equity mandates.
According to Berro, the sukuk fund marks Al Hilal’s second investment fund. 'The Al Hilal GCC Equity Fund was rolled out in 2010 and currently invests in publicly-traded Shariah-compliant corporate stocks,' he stated.
The latest fund is expected to quickly gain traction given the proven track record of the management and advisory team assembled by Al Hilal Bank, the prevailing volatile global financial environments, and the growing popularity of sukuk securities.
'The outlook for the sukuk market is very positive despite the current global macroeconomic uncertainty. Recently-launched sukuk issues were heavily oversubscribed by regional and global investors, reaffirming the appetite for good-quality credit,' said Berro.
'Furthermore, there is a healthy pipeline of new sukuk as issuers tap debt markets for refinancing needs and take advantage of the current low interest rates,' he noted.
Explaining the rationale behind a sukuk fund, Lim Say Cheong, the head of Al Hilal’s Investment Banking Group, said that today’s investors prefer low-risk investments with stable returns and regular income.
Interested parties are advised to contact Al Hilal Bank’s Investment Banking Group, the designated Fund Manager, for further details and any inquiries.-TradeArabia News Service