Abu Dhabi's Senaat said to revive $1bn IPO plan

Senaat shelved plans for a share sale in 2014 and focussed on selling shares in its subsidiaries

Senaat, which holds stakes in Abu Dhabi’s National Petroleum Construction and Emirates Steel, is considering reviving plans for an initial public offering three years after putting them on hold, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The company plans to raise about $1 billion from the offering and list shares on the Abu Dhabi stock exchange as the year, said the people, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

Senaat is talking to banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co., HSBC Holdings Plc and First Abu Dhabi Bank PJSC about the potential IPO, they said.

Senaat shelved plans for a share sale in 2014 after Abu Dhabi’s executive council, the emirate’s highest decision-making body, rejected them, people familiar with the decision said at the time.

The industrial conglomerate then decided to focus on selling shares in its subsidiaries, chairman Hussain Al Nowais said in 2015. Senaat hasn’t announced any plans to IPO any of its units since then.

Senaat and First Abu Dhabi Bank didn’t respond to requests for comment, while HSBC and JPMorgan declined to comment.

Emaar IPO

Companies in the UAE are starting to explore IPOs after just three companies sold shares in 2015 and 2016, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Emaar Properties said it plans to IPO its UAE real estate development unit later this year, while Emirates Global Aluminium, jointly owned by Abu Dhabi and Dubai, is also planning to sell shares, people familiar with the plans said in March.

Senaat subsidiaries Agthia Group, a food and beverage company, and Arkan Building Materials Co. already trade on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange.

Senaat’s profit rose 6 percent to 341 million dirhams ($93 million) in the first half of 2016, while revenue dropped 12 percent to 6.4 billion dirhams, according to the company’s website.

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