30/01/2018 13:31 AST

Waha Capital, a leading investment company based in Abu Dhabi, has reported a preliminary net profit of Dh425.9 million ($115.96 million), an increase of 4.6 percent from a year earlier, due to gains from divestments and lower costs.

The company reported a net profit of Dh158.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2017, compared to Dh19.5 million in the same period of 2016, an increase of 710.8 percent. The main contributors to this significant increase were two transactions in the fourth quarter of 2017, which resulted in the booking of gains on disposal.

A divestment of a 93 percent stake in Proficiency Healthcare Diagnostics (PHD), owned by Waha Capital through Anglo-Arabian Healthcare (AAH), delivered significant value. PHD had grown significantly since Waha Capital acquired it in 2013, doubling its revenues and earnings.

In addition, Waha Capital agreed to sell its stake in UAE-based National Petroleum Services to National Energy Services Reunited (NESR) in a cash and shares transaction. This was a value-creating transaction, which freed capital and will give Waha Capital a liquid stake in NESR, a company that is well positioned to be a leader in the oil and gas sector globally.

Hussain Jasim Al Nowais, Chairman of Waha Capital, said: "We have achieved good financial results in spite of the challenges facing the global economy and the capital markets, alongside the geopolitical factors which the region is experiencing.

“The company's financial indicators reflect the success of its strategy to diversify assets, income resources and its investment portfolio, while the continued growth in net profits in general and operating profits in particular, reflect the company's growing ability to gain a bigger share of the investment market.

“With a prudent approach to managing the company's financial resources, Waha Capital today has a strong balance sheet and the potential to move ahead with the next phase of expansion while pursuing more investment opportunities.

“The company will continue its efforts to achieve rewarding returns for its shareholders by continuing to diversify its asset portfolio to include new sectors and investment areas.”

Salem Rashid Al Noaimi, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Waha Capital, added: “Waha Capital manages its portfolio of investments actively, and we look to crystalize the value that we create when appropriate. In 2017, we took advantage of opportunities to divest assets, increase the liquidity of our portfolio, and to acquire a stake in a fast-growing fintech firm. Meanwhile, our asset management division continues to produce strong income streams, and we are making progress in attracting third-party investors, and increasing that fee income. Waha Capital has remained robust through a tough operating environment in the last couple of years, and we now look forward to seizing opportunities to create further shareholder value.”

During the year, Waha Capital also further diversified its principal investments portfolio by acquiring a significant minority stake in Channel VAS – a rapidly expanding “fintech” company with an addressable base of over 500 million mobile subscribers, who often do not have access to other financial services.

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