Kingdom Holding shareholders approve US$1bn in bond sales

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Kingdom Holding, an investment company controlled by billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, received shareholder approval to sell as much as SAR3.75bn (US$1bn) in bonds inside the Saudi Arabia or abroad.

Shareholders met yesterday in Riyadh, Kingdom Holding said in a statement to the Saudi bourse website today.

Saudi Arabian corporate bond sales are poised to set a record in 2012 as a surge in state spending in the Arab world’s biggest economy encourages private businesses to invest more in expansion projects.

Saudi Arabian Mining, the nation’s largest miner, and Almarai. are among five companies that unveiled plans to issue bonds this year.

The state-run General Authority of Civil Aviation sold SAR15bn (SAR$4bn) of Islamic bonds in January.

Kingdom Holding, 95 percent owned by Prince Alwaleed, is building the tallest tower in the world in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, at a cost of SAR4.6bn.

The company said in August it will use a mix of bank financing, cash and revenue from the project to fund the development. Kingdom Holding had current bank borrowings and terms loans of SAR1.46bn at the end of last year, according to its financial statement.

Prince Alwaleed’s investments include stakes in General Motors, News Corporation. and Apple. The prince, a nephew of Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah, was ranked the richest Arab businessman last year by Arabian Business magazine with assets valued at US$21.3bn.

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