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Arqaam Capital invites advisors ahead of flotation

DUBAI, February 20, 2015

Dubai-based financial services firm Arqaam Capital has invited banks to pitch for roles in arranging its flotation on the emirate's bourse, three banking sources aware of the matter told Reuters.

Arqaam has offices in five countries in the Middle East and Africa and offers services including brokerage, asset management and corporate finance advisory. It declined to comment when contacted by Reuters.

The invitation, known as a request for proposals (RFP), was sent to a number of international and local banks on Wednesday for a listing which is earmarked to happen in the latter part of this year, two of the sources said, with one specifying the third quarter as the target timeframe.

The sources spoke on condition of anonymity as the information isn't public.

New issues dried up for nearly five years in Dubai in the wake of the global economic financial crisis as the bourse lost lost around 70 per cent of its value. Listing activity started to pick up in the second half of 2014 but is still muted because of the slump in oil prices, which has fed market volatility and concerns over the Gulf's energy-centric economies.

But bankers have said many companies are still preparing to go public once markets have settled down.

Arqaam has around $1 billion of total client assets from around 700 clients, according to a company presentation on its website dated February.

Its current shareholder base includes more than 60 parties, including the Kuwait state-owned Public Institution for Social Security, Dubai's Emirates NBD, Switzerland's Vontobel Group and Singapore's Crescent Group.

It plans to open a further four offices in Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Kenya and Nigeria, according to the presentation, which didn't give a timeframe for the expansion. - Reuters

Tags: Bank | pitch | role | Arqaam | invite | flotation |

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