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Mon 2 May 2011 11:25 AM

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Abu Dhabi insurer Wataniya's IPO oversubscribed

Islamic insurer's $22.4m IPO launched on April 18, oversubscribed at least six times

Abu Dhabi insurer Wataniya's IPO oversubscribed
ISLAMIC INSURANCE: Islamic insurer Wataniyas initial public offering (IPO) was oversubscribed at least six times, a company official said (Getty Images)

Islamic insurer Wataniya's initial public offering (IPO) was oversubscribed at least six times, a company official said, signalling positive investor interest for a share sale in Abu Dhabi's muted IPO market.

Wataniya's AED82.5m ($22.4m) IPO launched on April 18 and closed on Sunday.

"The IPO was subscribed six times or more. It is good enough for this kind of market," Aref al Khouri, chairman of the founders' committee of Wataniya, said on phone.

The founders of Wataniya subscribed to 45 percent of the total share capital of AED150m.

Wataniya's founding shareholders include Abu Dhabi National Islamic Finance (ADNIF), Abu Dhabi National Insurance Co , Abu Dhabi National Energy Co and Aldar Properties .

ADNIF is a subsidiary of National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD), which is acting as adviser, lead manager and receiving bank for the IPO.

Bankers involved in the IPO said the response was positive.

"There was substantially good demand on the IPO. Institutions have shown very good interest and on the retail side there was very fair demand," Majd Maaitah, head of securities at NBAD said but declined to give details on subscription figures.

Another banker familiar with the deal said the company's strong shareholder backing gave added cushion to investors to subscribe to the issue.

Wataniya will be listed after a month on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, al Khouri Said.

The UAE did not have an IPO for over two and a half years. The first after that time-gap was by Abu Dhabi based Insurance House which was launched in February this year. UAE property firm Eshraq launched its IPO on Sunday.

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