Dubai’s Shuaa scales back research to reduce costs

Investment bank makes staff cuts, redeploys others in bid to stem losses
Dubai’s Shuaa scales back research to reduce costs
Shuaa has reported losses for four consecutive years
By Bloomberg
Tue 10 Jan 2012 11:50 AM

Shuaa Capital has scaled back its research department,
making five staff members redundant and redeploying others, as the investment
bank controlled by Dubai’s ruler cuts costs, the company said.

“We have scaled back to reduce costs, in line with Shuaa’s
rightsizing program and repositioning of the brokerage platform,” Oliver
Schutzmann, the company’s chief communications officer, told Bloomberg by
telephone today.

Shuaa Capital is moving away from the retail brokerage
business after markets in its home base declined and losses mounted. The
company, which hired former Credit Suisse Group AG board member Michael Philipp
as chief executive officer in October, said in November a first phase of job
cuts would affect 29 people.

The company had a third-quarter loss of AED156.2m ($42.5m)
after booking provisions.

Shuaa plans to expand its asset management and advisory
business in Abu Dhabi, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait and will focus on high net-worth
family businesses and small- to medium-sized companies as well as institutional
clients, Philipp said in October.

Markets in the Middle East have been hurt by uprisings that
ousted leaders in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya and amid fears Europe won’t be able
to contain its debt crisis. Fees earned by banks in the region fell 42 percent
to $320 million in the first nine months of last year from $551m during the
same period in 2010, according to New York-based research firm Freeman &
Co.

Shuaa shares dropped 0.4 percent to 47.3 fils yesterday, the
lowest close since November 2001. The stock tumbled 56 percent in 2011,
compared with a 17 percent decline in Dubai’s DFM General Index.

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