Riyadh construction show: 500 exhibitors already on board

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Updated 27 August 2013
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Riyadh construction show: 500 exhibitors already on board

Saudi Build 2013, the latest edition of the region’s premier construction event, has confirmed more than 500 exhibitors three months ahead of the show’s kickoff on November 4 at the Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Center.
The show, now on its 25th year, will reflect how, with around SR375 billion worth of projects on the pipeline, Saudi Arabia continues to be a driving force for construction in the MENA region. So far, 28 countries have assured their participation in the Kingdom’s largest business to business construction fair this year.
Saudi Build 2013, the 25th International Construction Technology and Building Materials Exhibition, will once again be a melting pot of contractors, real estate developers and building owners who will get to explore a full range of the best building solutions out in the international markets.
Many of the leading names in KSA construction will showcase their key developments at the upcoming event; Doka Saudi Arabia, for one, will present its extensive formwork solutions.
Doka has been involved in several of the Kingdom’s mega-projects, including King Abdullah Sport City, King Abdullah Financial District, King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz project.
Third Saudi Expansion of Holy Haram Makkah and surrounding areas, and King Abdul Aziz International Airport.
Doka and other key players will reveal the unique solutions they employ for various construction requirements and what strategies they use to energize the local markets.
“This is an important year for Saudi Build given its 25th year of existence and its valuable contributions to the ongoing dynamism of the Saudi construction market,” said Zeyad Al-Rukban, assistant general manager, Riyadh Exhibitions Company.
“Companies that have played key roles in growing the local industry such as Doka will make this edition extra-special by sharing the technologies, tools and best practices that have turned the Kingdom into the region’s top construction hub. This year’s edition will be an occasion to both look back at Saudi Arabia’s great accomplishments in the construction field and set better and brighter directions for industry,” said the official.
Saudi Build 2013 will also offer trade visitors exciting displays of the latest and top-notch Building Materials and Equipment, Architectural Finishing Products, Stone, Marble and Granite Products, Construction Tools and Technology, Engineering Services, Infrastructure Materials, and Security and Safety Systems, among others.
The show will serve as the main platform for building new business opportunities in Saudi Arabia’s construction sector through displays and presentations of the latest in technology, machinery and equipment.
Last year’s edition welcomed 812 exhibitors from 34 countries and 22,649 visitors covering an exhibiting space of sqm 26,000; with exhibitor confirmations already in full swing, the 2013 edition is on track to achieve record figures.


Slack primed as latest unicorn to make market debut

Updated 19 June 2019
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Slack primed as latest unicorn to make market debut

  • Slack is a cloud-based software company that markets online tools for information sharing and workflow management
  • Current customers include Nordstrom, Ford and HSBC and the company has more than 95,000 paid customers overall

NEW YORK: The 2019 parade of big new Wall Street entrants continues this week with the debut of Slack Technologies, underscoring investor hunger for new companies in spite of some high-profile stumbles.
Nearly halfway through the year, US markets are on track for one of the biggest IPO seasons ever in terms of money raised following a stream of offerings from former “unicorns,” private companies worth more than $1 billion.
Yet two of this year’s biggest names — Uber and Lyft — currently trade below their IPO price, along with Snapchat, which has lagged its initial price for most of the time since it went public in March 2017.
Still, there have also been plenty of prominent companies that have risen since their initial public offerings, including jeans company Levi’s, Tradeweb Markets, which builds electronic marketplaces, Zoom Video Communications, and mobile application and software system Pinterest.
The most dramatic jump has been in food company Beyond Meat, which now trades at more than six-fold its entering price.
“The public has a huge interest” in new companies, said JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist at TD Ameritrade, adding that the mixed performance of the 2019 ex-unicorn class is comparable to that of the broader market.
“There aren’t a lot of other choices besides IPOs for investors seeking growth,” said Gregori Volokhine, president of Meeschaert Financial Services, who attributes the rush of funds in part to central bank policies promoting liquidity.
“There’s an excess of underinvested funds worldwide,” he said.
In terms of sheer volume, the number of IPOs in 2019 so far — 93 — is roughly equal to last year’s figure, according to Dealogic.
But the funds raised, $34.5 billion, stand 13.6 percent above last year’s sum and the highest for the comparable period since 2000, according to Dealogic data.

Direct listing
A cloud-based software company that markets online tools for information sharing and workflow management, San Francisco-based Slack parts ways from the other big companies this year by opting for a direct listing instead of an IPO.
This approach, which was also employed by Spotify last year, cuts down on fees to investment bankers in IPOs. Although existing shares can be sold, a direct listing does not issue new shares, averting share dilution but also forgoing the new funds raised in an IPO.
The process can also be riskier in terms of share price volatility compared with an IPO, where underwriters line up investors in advance. In a direct listing, shares are exposed more directly to the open market.
Slack chief executive and co-founder Stewart Butterfield described the company’s technologies as a “brand new category of software” that replaces email in a company.
Current customers include Nordstrom, Ford and HSBC and the company has more than 95,000 paid customers overall.
“It turns email to messages and organizes them into team, project and topic based channels instead of individual in-boxes,” Butterfield said in a June 10 earnings conference call.
“It’s a team-first approach to communication, in contrast to email’s individual first approach. It creates a rich, searchable, permanent body of information that’s widely available across an organization, even for people who just joined the team.”
 

Unprofitable three years
The company, which is expected to be valued at around $17 billion when it enters the market on Thursday, reported revenues of $134.8 million in the quarter ending April 30, up 66.7 percent from the year-ago period.
But Slack, which has been unprofitable the last three years, reported a $33.3 million loss during the period, 34 percent more than last year’s loss.
Of course, many unprofitable companies have gone public and done well in markets for years. Yet the heavy losses and murky profit outlook at Uber and Lyft have been seen as factors in their lackluster performance since going public.
But investors remain keen on growth stories following the success of Amazon, Facebook and other tech giants that have emerged in recent decades.
A key beneficiary of this desire has been Beyond Meat, which has multiplied in value many times since going public May 3 at $25 and currently is priced at $168.92. The company has been seen as a main beneficiary of the growing alternative protein market, which some analysts think could top $100 billion in the coming decade or so.
Kinahan said in general investors have wised up after the early 2000s Internet bubble but that “it’s just unnatural” for stocks like Beyond Meat to move in an unbroken straight line upwards.
“There’s a healthy bit of skepticism in the market,” he said. “However, certain companies have maybe gotten a little ahead of themselves.”