27/09/2017 06:11 AST

In the first half of 2017, Middle East and North Africa (Mena) IPO activity witnessed 16 deals, representing a 100 per cent increase when compared to the first half of 2016. Announced Mena value, or capital raised, reached $788 million in H1 2017, a 21 per cent decrease from the first half of 2016.

Out of the 16 IPOs, nine IPOs worth $200.5 million were from companies listed on the Saudi NOMU market. The cross-border IPO of ADES International Holding Ltd raised $243.5m on the London Stock Exchange and was the largest IPO of a Mena company, by capital raised, year-to-date. “Increasing stability in oil prices and confidence in the global economy and markets are likely to drive an increased IPO activity in 2017 and 2018 across Mena, with a strong backlog of companies potentially preparing to come to market. The key driver for the Mena IPO market will likely be the privatisation of leading government-owned assets across a number of sectors,” Gregory Hughes, EY Mena IPO Leader, said.

The greenfield IPO of Orient UNB Takaful in second quarter of 2017 represents the first IPO on the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) since the IPO of Dubai Parks and Resorts in 2014. Volume of deals increase in GCC

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

The highest capital raised in the first half of 2017 was in the oil and gas sector with one deal announced at a value of $243.5 million. The construction industry followed with one deal valued at $135 million. The third most valuable IPO by capital raised was in the real estate investment trust (REIT) at $105 million for one deal.

In the first half of 2017, oil prices continued to fluctuate between $45 and $55 per barrel as the initial effect of agreed oil production cuts by Opec and non-Opec members continue to be impacted by ongoing market factors, resulting in a downward trend toward the end of the second quarter of 2017. However, the continued drive for privatisation across Mena countries is likely to result in an increase in the number of IPOs on exchanges.

“Global IPO activity should continue to strengthen in the second half of 2017, underpinned by capital markets reaching all-time highs. Investor sentiment has improved and the global outlook is more positive, which should reflect on the IPO market in the Mena region,” Mayur Pau, Mena Financial Services IPO Leader, EY, said.


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