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Tue 8 Apr 2008 10:30 AM

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Sorouh to allow 40% foreign ownership

Abu Dhabi-based property developer moves to ensure majority rests with institutions, funds.

The UAEs' Sorouh Real Estate plans to allow foreign investors to own up to 40% in the property company, up from the current ceiling of 20%, an executive said on Tuesday.

Firoze Kapadia, executive director of treasury and investments, told newswire Reuters the company's board would likely make the decision at a meeting at the end of this month with the aim of attracting more foreign institutional investors.

"We want to make an effort towards ensuring that the majority of the shareholding rests with institutions, pension funds, fund managers," Kapadia said on the sidelines of a road show for Abu Dhabi firms in Tokyo organised by HSBC.

"We want to reduce the volatility in our share dealing."

When asked the likelihood of the board making the decision to raise the limit on foreign ownership, Kapadia said: "Absolutely."

"Since we opened up to foreign institutions or foreigners we've seen a huge increase in our share price. The institutions understand what they are buying into," he said. (Reuters)