Al-Othaim Markets’ shares fall after first-half profit jump

Update Al-Othaim Markets’ shares fall after first-half profit jump
the retailer declared a dividend payout for the first half of the year amounting to SR180 million. (Supplied)
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Updated 18 August 2022

Al-Othaim Markets’ shares fall after first-half profit jump

Al-Othaim Markets’ shares fall after first-half profit jump

RIYADH: Shares of Abdullah Al-Othaim Markets Co. slipped after the company reported a higher profit of SR138 million ($37 million) for the first half of 2022.

Listed on the Saudi Exchange, the company’s share price was down nearly 4 percent to SR122 by 12:28 p.m. Saudi time, hours after releasing its earnings report on Thursday.

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 profit in its associate Gulf Flour Miling 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. 


Capital Market Authority approves amending business list of BNP Paribas Saudi Arabia

Capital Market Authority approves amending business list of BNP Paribas Saudi Arabia
Updated 27 sec ago

Capital Market Authority approves amending business list of BNP Paribas Saudi Arabia

Capital Market Authority approves amending business list of BNP Paribas Saudi Arabia

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority has approved the request of BNP Paribas Investment Co. to amend the list of businesses it is licensed to practice.

Following the amendment, the investment service provider will be authorized to conduct dealing, keeping, arranging, and advising in securities business, according to a statement. 

Established in 2009, BNP Paribas Investment Co. Saudi Arabia is a private limited company based in Riyadh.

Operating in the investment services sector, the organization is owned by French-based enterprises.

In March 2021, BNP Paribas appointed Reema Al-Asmari as head of territory for Saudi Arabia, to bolster the French bank’s corporate and investment banking presence in the Kingdom.

This comes in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030’s reform plan, as Saudi Arabia aims for female participation in the labor force to be at 30 percent by 2030, a target it has now achieved ahead of schedule.

The appointment came following a report by the global ratings agency Moody’s that found that rising female participation in the labor force has the potential to boost Saudi Arabia’s non-oil growth and improve average household incomes.


Saudi Arabia’s wealth fund hires banks for debut green bonds, shows document

Saudi Arabia’s wealth fund hires banks for debut green bonds, shows document
Updated 32 sec ago

Saudi Arabia’s wealth fund hires banks for debut green bonds, shows document

Saudi Arabia’s wealth fund hires banks for debut green bonds, shows document

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund, has hired a large group of banks including Citi and JPMorgan to arrange a debut issuance of multi-tranche US dollar-denominated green bonds, a document showed on Tuesday.
BNP Paribas, Citi, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan, mandated as joint global coordinators and active book-runners, will organize investor calls starting on Tuesday.
A debut issuance in tranches of five, 10 and potentially a longer-dated tenor will follow, subject to market conditions. The issuance will be under GACI First Investment Co. and guaranteed by PIF.
Credit Agricole, First Abu Dhabi Bank, HSBC, Mizuho, SMBC Nikko, SNB Capital, Societe Generale and Standard Chartered are also active book-runners, while ANB Capital, BofA Securities, Bank of China, GIB Capital, ICBC, IMI Intesa Sanpaolo, Morgan Stanley, MUFG, Natixis, Riyad Capital and Saudi Fransi Capital are also on the deal. 


MENA Project Tracker — DEWA awards advisory services contract; Iraq to complete $1bn airport by end of 2023

MENA Project Tracker — DEWA awards advisory services contract; Iraq to complete $1bn airport by end of 2023
Updated 48 min 6 sec ago

MENA Project Tracker — DEWA awards advisory services contract; Iraq to complete $1bn airport by end of 2023

MENA Project Tracker — DEWA awards advisory services contract; Iraq to complete $1bn airport by end of 2023

RIYADH: Emirates Water & Electricity Co. has awarded the contract to develop the Mirfa 2 seawater reverse osmosis project to a consortium led by France’s Engie, reported MEED.

The Engie-led team offered to develop the 120 million imperial gallons a day independent water plant for $48.32 cents a cubic meter, winning the contract over Spain's Acciona by $3.9 c/cm.

DEWA awards advisory services contract

Dubai Electricity & Water Authority has selected a team led by UK-based Deloitte for the advisory services contract on the development of the Hassyan seawater reverse osmosis independent water project, reported MEED.

It shares this title of ‘legal advisor’ with two other companies — Canadian engineering firm WSP and the UK’s Addleshaw Goddard.

The team placed a bid of 2.09 million dirhams ($570,000) to beat its competitors in the contract.

Bank Muscat credits $101m to Galfar

Bank Muscat has agreed to loan Galfar Engineering & Contracting credit facilities of 39 million Omani rials ($101 million) on their projects, reported MEED.

“We are pleased to further strengthen our partnership with Bank Muscat by concluding this bespoke agreement to facilitate execution of three major projects, which are part of the infrastructure development of our beloved nation,” said Hamoud Al-Tobi, CEO of Galfar.

Ora Developers grants $49m construction contracts

Egypt-based Ora Developers has granted two $49 million construction contracts to Redcon Construction and Concrete Plus for phase one of ZED East project in New Cairo, according to Zawya.

The scope of work in phase one includes constructing 400 residential units — consisting of apartments, duplexes, townhouses, and villas — stretching over 56 acres of land.

The project is expected to be complete by 2025.

Iraq to complete $1bn airport by end of 2023

Iraq is set to complete the first phase of the $1 billion Karbala Airport by the end of 2023, as part of its post-war rebuilding initiative, reported Zawya.

Upon its completion, the airport will hold a capacity of three million passengers.

“We hope that phase one of this strategic project will be completed next year and it will be formally inaugurated at the end of 2023,” stated Suha Al-Najjar, head of the National Investment Commission.


Qatar Airways and British Airways form joint business to add 42 new countries 

Qatar Airways and British Airways form joint business to add 42 new countries 
Updated 27 September 2022

Qatar Airways and British Airways form joint business to add 42 new countries 

Qatar Airways and British Airways form joint business to add 42 new countries 

RIYADH: In the largest joint partnership of its kind, Gulf carrier Qatar Airways and European airline British Airways have joined hands to offer an expansive network of international flights to their customers.   

The partnership will see both the airlines adding 42 new countries to their shared network, which includes Italy, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, and the Maldives, spreading across Africa, Asia, Europe, Oceania and the Middle East.

“This is a huge milestone in our long-standing relationship with Qatar Airways, an airline that shares our passion for customer service, choice and flexibility,” said Sean Doyle, chairman and CEO of British Airways.

With the joint business coming into effect, the airlines will now offer customers a network spanning over 185 destinations across more than 60 countries.

The customers of Qatar Airways and British Airways will also have a wider range of prices, schedules, and loyalty programs, as well as more options of direct and connecting flights through London and Doha, according to a press release.

The other benefits include having the freedom to engage with both airlines’ loyalty programs, and earning and spending Avios, their common currency. They will also be able to transfer and combine balances and claim premiums from both the Qatar Airways Privilege Club and the British Airways Executive Club, the release added. 

The airlines said this is all part of their plan to “move further together” by enhancing the joint network and providing passengers with the best of both airlines.

“The growing collaboration between Qatar Airways and British Airways shows our customers our common goal to offer an unparalleled network with unique benefits. Travelers can now experience the best in quality and service as they travel across our joint network,” said Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive Akbar Al Baker.


NEOM’s tech unit rebrands amid plans to emerge as cognitive multinational conglomerate

NEOM’s tech unit rebrands amid plans to emerge as cognitive multinational conglomerate
Updated 27 September 2022

NEOM’s tech unit rebrands amid plans to emerge as cognitive multinational conglomerate

NEOM’s tech unit rebrands amid plans to emerge as cognitive multinational conglomerate

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s NEOM Tech & Digital Co. has rebranded as Tonomus, signaling the next stage in its growth plans.

The rebranding focuses on Tonomus’s role as a cognitive multinational company in a bid to enable NEOM to fuel Saudi Arabia’s economic growth and diversification, according to a statement. 

Tonomous, headquartered at NEOM, is building the cognitive foundation and adopting hyper-disruptive solutions integral to the development of NEOM and its flagship initiatives, the statement added.

As it invested $1 billion in 2022 in artificial intelligence-driven products and hyperconnected, predictive and proactive solutions, Tonomous emerged as a global player in the smart-to-cognitive transition. 

“Tonomus will support our ambitions by contributing to the future of the tech and digital industry, stimulating innovation, and driving the development of the world’s first cognitive community,” CEO Nadhmi Al-Nasr said. 

“This will be realized by involving the most talented and brightest minds to develop the integrated system that will be utilized across all of NEOM’s businesses, sectors and projects,” he added. 

In this context, NEOM is cooperating with Low Earth Orbit satellite operator OneWe to establish a $200 million joint venture, aimed at providing rapid and reliable connectivity.