UAE, Saudi to lead IPO Mena markets in 2023, says report

The initial public offering (IPO) markets in Middle East and North Africa have witnessed strong momentum in 2022 led by GCC countries, especially UAE and Saudi Arabia, according to EFG Hermes Holding, a leading investment bank franchise in Frontier Emerging Markets (FEM).  


This comes in a year rife with macroeconomic volatility due to persistently high inflation rates, a challenging interest environment driven by Fed-supersised rate hikes, and soaring commodity prices caused by the Russia-Ukraine crisis that dampened global capital market activity and investor sentiment, stated EFG Hermes in its report.


"We expect the UAE and Saudi Arabia to lead the IPO markets in the region this year,'' stated EFG Hermes Holding Group CEO Karim Awad on the sidelines of the 17th EFG Hermes One-on-One Conference which opened today (March 6) in Dubai. 


Awad revealed that his group was working on five diverse sectoral IPOs in the Gulf market which will be launched between the second and fourth quarters of the year.


"The GCC in particular has demonstrated resilience against global turbulence, driven by a solid crude oil market and government initiatives that have collectively deepened the region’s capital markets," he noted.


However, the first quarter of 2023 saw a slight reversal, with a slowdown in commodity price jumps as alternative supplies came on stream and China’s reversal of economically stifling zero-Covid policies spurring investors to pour into emerging market securities at a near-record rate," he explained. 


The event, which runs until March 9, will witness 179 companies in numerous key sectors across 29 countries hold direct meetings with over 561 institutional investors and fund managers representing 247 international institutions.


It is being attended by senior government officials, high-profile regional business leaders, investors, and listed companies.


Headlined “Outplaying Challenges,” the EFG Hermes conference hosted thousands of one-on-one meetings between executives representing some of the region’s most compelling prospects and regional and global institutional investors, allowing them to gain insights into key trends impacting frontier and emerging markets today to explore value-accretive investment prospects.


"The conference continues to act as a growth catalyst for capital market investment across FEM, opening direct communication channels between investors and the most promising listed companies," remarked Awad. 


"Leveraging decades of on-the-ground expertise in these markets, we provide investors with the tools, unique insights, and unfettered access they need to maximise returns — maintaining our position as a financial enabler of corporate success," he added.


Mohamed Ebeid, Co-CEO of the Investment Bank at EFG Hermes Holding, said since the start of the year, the MSCI EM equities index has been trading at 20% or more above last year’s low as emerging economies look set to grow faster than advanced ones this year, with EM GDPs expected to expand by 1.4 percentage points more than the rate in advanced economies. 


"The GCC has, in recent months, proven to be a key investment hub for regional and global investors - a transformation we’ve been incredibly successful in capitalising on by capturing a large share of ECM and M&A deals, particularly in the UAE," noted Ebeid. 


"As we look ahead, we are confident we can continue ramping up our equity, debt, and M&A transaction pipeline and unlock unmatched prospects for clients and investors alike, he added.-TradeArabia News Service




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