Companies to benefit from IFRS adoption in Kingdom

Ahmed Reda
Updated 18 November 2017
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Companies to benefit from IFRS adoption in Kingdom

Companies in Saudi Arabia are facing an era of change in their accounting practices due to changes being implemented by the Saudi Organization of Certified Public Accountants (SOCPA) to support the “One Global Financial Reporting Framework” vision of International Accounting Standards Board (IASB). This is according to Ahmed Reda, MENA consumer products and retail leader at EY.
Reda said SOCPA has endorsed International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) with some modifications resulting in additional disclosures and ensuring compliance with Shariah. SOCPA required all listed companies to apply endorsed IFRSs from 2017 whereas unlisted companies will be adopting from 2018.
He said by issuing the Q1 results under IFRS, listed companies in Saudi Arabia have successfully taken the initial step in this direction.
“The transition to IFRS promises transparent, comparable and consistent financial information to guide investors in making optimal investment decisions. Some of the key benefits that the companies will enjoy from IFRS adoption include: increased foreign direct investment (FDI), enhanced quality reporting, transparency and comparability, and more transparency to perform risk assessments on financial statements and other ratios,” Reda said.
He said companies in the Kingdom should consider whether they want to be early adopters of the standards, which will be applicable in the next one to two years (i.e. IFRS 9, 15 and 16). “This may help them to improve their financial reporting while also avoiding a second wave of change in 2018, which could result in efficiencies in the longer term,” Reda added.
“The availability of skilled resources will also remain a challenge for the next few years. Further, IFRS compliance is not a onetime exercise. Companies should retain or hire the necessary resources to ensure smooth and seamless compliance of IFRS. This incorporates setting up consultative groups to be accessible to react speedily to challenges confronted and training and development of their employees.”
Starting from 2018, all entities which are not listed are required to adopt IFRS with an option to apply IFRS for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
“Accordingly, they need to start assessing the impact and learning from the experience of listed companies as the transition is not merely an accounting change but will have an organizational wide impact including taxation, marketing, sales, procurement, contracting, human resources and others,” he said.


Ascott debuts in Africa with Kwarleyz Residence

Updated 15 October 2018
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Ascott debuts in Africa with Kwarleyz Residence

The Ascott Limited has cemented its footprint on the African continent with the opening of its first property in Accra, the capital of Ghana. Kwarleyz Residence, which is managed by Ascott, will be the first upscale international -class serviced residence to enter the flourishing Ghanaian market.
Thomas Wee, Ascott’s deputy managing director for the Middle East, Africa, Turkey and India, said: “Ascott has been managing world-class serviced residences globally for over 30 years. The opening of our first property in Africa, Kwarleyz Residence, enables our worldwide network of corporate clients and the growing international travelers to experience Ascott’s award-winning hospitality on another continent.
“Africa is the world’s second fastest-growing economy after Asia and we see great potential in the region’s hospitality market. Africa’s huge economic growth is fueled by massive infrastructure development, favorable investment policies, and a young population.
With our strong expertise in hospitality management, Ascott aims to set the benchmark in the region by offering business and leisure travelers world-class extended stay accommodation and superior customer service.”
Wee added: “In addition to Kwarleyz Residence, we have secured a contract to manage Ascott 1 Oxford Street which will open in the heart of Accra in 2019.”
Located in the upscale airport residential district, Kwarleyz Residence is surrounded by embassies and the headquarters of gold mining companies. About a five-minute drive from the Kotoka International Airport, the property is within easy access to the Marina Mall at Airport City and Tema Industrial City, via the motorway.
Vincent Miccolis, Ascott’s regional general manager for the Middle East, Africa and Turkey, said: “We are proud to partner with Wonda World Estates to bring the first-of-its-kind hospitality offering to the Ghanaian capital and introduce sophisticated living in Accra with the opening of Kwarleyz Residence.”
Nana Kwame Bediako, president for the Kwarleyz Group of companies, which includes Wonda World Estates, said: “We see this collaborative project with our colleagues at Ascott as another example of Wonda World Estates, Kwarleyz Group, Cola Group and Kensington Residential Partners showcasing, either individually or as a collective, a commitment to the improvement of emerging markets across the African landscape.”
The 40-unit serviced residence provides a variety of studio and one- to three-bedroom apartments.
The property includes facilities such as a restaurant, coffee lounge, sky bar, rooftop garden and basement parking. Guests can relax and rejuvenate in the gymnasium, outdoor pool or spa.
The International Monetary Fund forecasts that Africa’s economy will be the second fastest growing in the world with an annual growth rate of 4.3 percent from 2016 to 2020. Ghana is ranked Africa’s fifth most attractive investment destination. Its foreign direct investment increased by nine percent to a record $3.5 billion in 2016.