Crypto Moves — Bitcoin, Ether down; Kuwait-based Islamic bank enters the metaverse

Crypto Moves — Bitcoin, Ether down; Kuwait-based Islamic bank enters the metaverse
Warba Bank is based in Kuwait (Shutterstock)
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Updated 04 July 2022

Crypto Moves — Bitcoin, Ether down; Kuwait-based Islamic bank enters the metaverse

Crypto Moves — Bitcoin, Ether down; Kuwait-based Islamic bank enters the metaverse

RIYADH: Bitcoin, the leading cryptocurrency internationally, traded lower on Monday, falling by 0.01 percent to $19,106 as of 10:55 p.m. Riyadh time. 

Ether, the second most traded cryptocurrency, was priced at $1,049 down by 1.20 percent, according to data from CoinDesk.

Kuwait-based Islamic bank enters the metaverse

Warba Bank, a Kuwait-based Islamic bank, has become the latest corporation from the Middle East and North Africa region to enter the Metaverse, a network of 3D virtual worlds focused on social connection. 

The bank now occupies two sites in the metaverse, one on Decentraland and another on Sandbox.

The bank's presence in the metaverse is expected to enhance its communication with the younger generation, according to Bitcoin.com. 

“Warba Bank’s interest in entering this virtual reality comes within the framework of digital trends to transform into a Web3. The world of virtual reality is used in several advanced fields, including services, education, health and others,” Anwar Al-Ghaith, the financial institution’s vice president for Support Services and Treasury, said. 

He added: “Warba Bank aims to be close to its clients in virtual reality to introduce its products and services, as well as communicating with them in an innovative way that reflects Warba Bank’s image as a pioneer in digital transformation.”

According to a statement issued by the bank, it is now working to achieve its ambitious goals and enhance the advantages of digital services.

It will also focus on absorbing emerging technologies and artificial intelligence.


Oil Updates — Crude steady; Myanmar to import Russian oil; Phillips 66 offers to buy pipeline operator DCP Midstream

Oil Updates — Crude steady; Myanmar to import Russian oil; Phillips 66 offers to buy pipeline operator DCP Midstream
Updated 16 sec ago

Oil Updates — Crude steady; Myanmar to import Russian oil; Phillips 66 offers to buy pipeline operator DCP Midstream

Oil Updates — Crude steady; Myanmar to import Russian oil; Phillips 66 offers to buy pipeline operator DCP Midstream

RIYADH: Oil prices were little changed on Thursday as investors grappled with falling stockpiles in the US, rising output from Russia and worries about a potential global recession.

Brent crude futures climbed 10 cents, or 0.1 percent, to $93.75 a barrel by 0347 GMT. 

US crude futures gained 10 cents, or 0.1 percent, to $88.21 a barrel.

Myanmar to import Russian oil, military says

Military-ruled Myanmar plans to import Russian gasoline and fuel oil to ease supply concerns and rising prices, a junta spokesperson said, the latest developing country to do so amid a global energy crisis.

The Southeast Asian country has maintained friendly ties with Russia, even as both remain under a raft of sanctions from Western countries — Myanmar for a military coup that overthrew an elected government last year, and Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, which it calls a “special military operation.”

Russia is seeking new customers for its energy in the region as its biggest export destination, Europe, will impose an embargo on Russian oil in phases later this year.

“We have received permission to import petrol from Russia,” military spokesperson Zaw Min Tun said during a news conference on Wednesday, adding that it was favored for its “quality and low cost.”

Fuel oil shipments are due to start arriving from September, according to media.

Phillips 66 offers to buy pipeline operator DCP Midstream

US refiner Phillips 66 on Wednesday offered to acquire the public units of DCP Midstream in a deal that would value the pipeline operator at a $7.2 billion deal and bulk up Phillip’s natural gas liquids business.

A deal would mark the first major move by Mark Lashier, who took over as the CEO of Phillips 66 last month. Earlier this year, the company acquired the public units in the transportation and storage business Phillips 66 Partners.

Canadian pipeline operator Enbridge, which owned 50 percent of DCP’s general partner, said it would reduce its stake in the company to 13.2 percent from 28.3 percent. It received a $400 million cash payment from Phillips 66 as part of the deal.

Enbridge will, in turn, take over as operator and more than double its stake in the Grey Oak pipeline, previously operated by Phillips 66. The Grey Oak pipeline transport crude oil from West Texas to the Gulf Coast.

Phillips 66’s economic interest in the Gray Oak pipeline will fall to 6.50 percent from 42.25 percent.

Aker Energy postpones Ghana oilfield plan amid Lukoil’s involvement

Norway’s Aker Energy said on Wednesday it would postpone the submission of a development plan for its Pecan oilfield off Ghana amid concern the project could face sanctions over the war in Ukraine due to the involvement of Russian oil firm Lukoil.

Aker Energy, controlled by Aker ASA, owns 50 percent in the deepwater block off Ghana where the Pecan field is located, while Lukoil holds 38 percent, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation has 10 percent and Fueltrade 2 percent.

The partners will not submit a development plan to Ghanaian authorities “until the challenges have been resolved,” Aker ASA CEO Oeyvind Eriksen told a call with analysts.

Russia invaded Ukraine in February in what it calls “a special military operation,” prompting unprecedented Western sanctions on Moscow and a breakup of economic relations.

“We are continuing a dialogue with Lukoil and Ghanaian authorities about possible solutions,” Eriksen told Reuters, adding that one option was for Lukoil to divest from the project.

Aker said Ghanaian authorities have extended a deadline to submit the plan until Sept. 30.

(With input from Reuters)


TASI starts higher as new earnings reports boost investors’ sentiment: Opening bell

TASI starts higher as new earnings reports boost investors’ sentiment: Opening bell
Updated 10 min 46 sec ago

TASI starts higher as new earnings reports boost investors’ sentiment: Opening bell

TASI starts higher as new earnings reports boost investors’ sentiment: Opening bell

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index started the week’s final session higher as investors took comfort in the release of new earnings reports.

TAS edged up 0.14 percent to 12,664, while the parallel Nomu market started almost flat at 21,513, as of 10:06 a.m. Saudi time.

The Kingdom’s largest valued bank Al Rajhi rose 0.56 percent, while The Saudi National Bank, the country's largest lender, increased 0.14 percent.

Among the Kingdom's leading information technology firms, Elm and Al Moammar Information Systems Co. declined 0.52 percent and 0.74 percent, respectively.

Red Sea International Co. dropped 0.42 percent, after it secured financing from SABB worth SR35 million.

Taiba Investments Co. rose 0.66 percent, after it turned into a profit of SR55 million ($15 million) in the first half, wiping out losses of SR14.8 million from the same period last year.

Abdullah Al Othaim Markets Co. dropped 2.05 percent, despite reporting a 31 percent increase in profits for the first half of the year to SR138 million.

Sadr Logistics Co. declined 0.57 percent, after it turned into losses of SR3 million during the first six months of 2022.


Here’s what you need to know before Tadawul trading on Thursday

Here’s what you need to know before Tadawul trading on Thursday
Updated 18 August 2022

Here’s what you need to know before Tadawul trading on Thursday

Here’s what you need to know before Tadawul trading on Thursday

RIYADH: Saudi stocks jumped on Wednesday, thanks to strong first-half earnings despite mixed results from the insurance and cement sectors.

TASI the main index added 0.8 percent to 12,646, while the parallel Nomu market lost 2.3 percent to 21,533, as information technology consulting firm Saudi Networkers Services Co. made a weak stock market debut.

Gulf peers advanced in line with the Kingdom's main benchmark index, led by a 1.8 percent jump for the Qatari bourse.

Dubai and Abu Dhabi gained 1.3 and 0.7 percent, respectively, followed by Kuwait and Bahrain. While the Omani index edged 0.1 percent lower.

Elsewhere, Egypt’s EGX30 soared 2.2 percent after the country’s president accepted the resignation of central bank governor Tarek Amer, the presidential office said.

In energy trading, Brent crude traded at $93.7 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate slipped to $88.08 a barrel as of 9:14 a.m. Saudi time on Thursday.

Stock news

Abdullah Al Othaim Markets Co. reported a higher profit of SR138 million ($37 million) for the first half of 2022, on the back of sales growth

Malath Cooperative Insurance Co. posted a 216 percent higher net loss before Zakat of SR25 million for the first half of 2022

Taiba Investments Co. was back to a profit of SR55 million in the first half of 2022 as hospitality sales rose post the pandemic

Red Sea International Co. secured SR35 million worth of financing from SABB 

CHUBB Arabia Cooperative Insurance Co.'s half-year profit before Zakat declined 54.8 percent to SR3 million

Gulf General Cooperative Insurance Co.’s losses narrowed by 20 percent to SR35 million in the first half of 2022

SABB Takaful issued its board’s circular regarding the offer document for the merger with Walaa Cooperative Insurance Co.

National Gas and Industrialization Co. announced it is studying the feasibility of partnering with UK’s Aburi Composites and Front End Co. to operate a joint composite cylinder factory

Naba Alsaha’s initial public offering for listing on Nomu was concluded with 531 percent coverage

Andalus Property Co. appointed Mashal Ibrahim Abuneef as its acting CEO effective Sep. 1

Tabuk Agricultural Development Co. signed a contract to sell its industrial potatoes to Wafrah for Industry and Development Co. for SR4.3 million

Calendar

August 18, 2022

Rawasi Albina Investment Co. will start trading its shares on Nomu


Taiba Investments returns to profits of $15m on pandemic recovery in H1

Taiba Investments returns to profits of $15m on pandemic recovery in H1
Updated 18 August 2022

Taiba Investments returns to profits of $15m on pandemic recovery in H1

Taiba Investments returns to profits of $15m on pandemic recovery in H1

RIYADH: Taiba Investments Co. has turned into a profit of SR55 million ($15 million) in the first half of the year, wiping out losses of SR14.8 million from the same period last year.

The results are primarily due to the gradual recovery of Taiba’s activities from the COVID 19 pandemic, it said in a bourse filing.

Its revenues soared 103 percent to SR134 million during the first six months of 2022.

Ramadan and the Hajj season contributed to increased hospitality revenues and improved lease performance for the company's properties during the period, it said.

Listed in the Saudi main index, Taiba Investments Co. specializes in investing in real estate, tourism, maintenance, operations, industry, mining, agriculture, and trade.


Saudi retailer Al Othaim Markets’ profit jumps 31% to $37m as sales soar in H1

Saudi retailer Al Othaim Markets’ profit jumps 31% to $37m as sales soar in H1
Updated 18 August 2022

Saudi retailer Al Othaim Markets’ profit jumps 31% to $37m as sales soar in H1

Saudi retailer Al Othaim Markets’ profit jumps 31% to $37m as sales soar in H1

RIYADH: Abdullah Al-Othaim Markets Co. reported a higher profit of SR138 million ($37 million) for the first half of 2022 on the back of sales growth.

Owing to an 11 percent rise in revenue to SR4.7 billion, profit surged 31 percent from SR106 million in the same period last year, according to a bourse filing.

The retail major noted that its share in the profit of its associate Gulf Flour Milling Co. boosted this period’s results, as it was not recorded in the prior year.

However, it incurred higher costs from opening new stores and enhancing competencies in senior positions, in addition to the fact that profits from its mall unit, Abdullah Al-Othaim Investment Co., were derecognized.

In a separate filing, the retailer declared a dividend payout for the first half of the year amounting to SR180 million, representing SR2 per share, to be paid in September.