Sept 16 Abu Dhabi's Gulf Capital said on Monday
it has hired an investment bank to advise it on a renewed
attempt to issue shares in oil and gas services firm, Gulf
Marine, on an overseas stock exchange.
The private equity firm, which owns 79 percent of the Middle
East's largest operator of jack-up barges, tried to sell the
business last year for more than $500 million but talks
collapsed due to financing issues and differences over its
Since then Gulf Capital has been preparing Gulf Marine
Services - one of the biggest assets in its portfolio - for an
initial public offering in a major stock exchange such as London
Private equity firms in the region are looking to exit their
investments due to pressure from shareholders for returns and as
financial markets in the region recover from the twin blows of
Arab Spring uprisings and the global financial crisis.
Gulf Capital said it hired Rothschild as a
financial advisor for the initial public offering (IPO).
"Gulf Marine is an extremely profitable business and the
firm is ready to be listed in a major international stock
exchange. Rothschild will help us identify the location for the
IPO as we prepare for the listing," said Karim El-Solh, Gulf
Capital's chief executive.
Gulf Capital is set to appoint Bank of America Merrill Lynch
, Barclays Plc and J.P. Morgan Chase Inc
as arranging banks on the IPO, three banking sources aware of
the matter said. The sources spoke on condition of anonymity as
the matter is not public.
One of the sources said Gulf Capital was most likely to list
GMS on the London Stock Exchange. Other Abu Dhabi-based
firms have listed in London recently. Al Noor Hospitals
listed in London in June with a valuation of $1 billion. Its
rival, NMC Healthcare listed in London last year.
El-Soh declined to comment on the appointment of arranging
He expects the GMS listing to take place by mid-2014, he
said. Gulf Capital had led a consortium of investors who
acquired 100 percent of GMS in 2007.
During Gulf Capital's ownership of the firm from 2007 to
2012, revenue rose 460 percent and profitability rose by 750
percent, Gulf Capital said in its website.
In July, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank arranged a $360
million syndicated Islamic facility for GMS, with some of the
proceeds used to pay out investors as dividends.