Dubai's Emaar to buy out minority shareholders in malls unit

DUBAI (Reuters) - Dubai developer Emaar Properties on Tuesday said it was buying out minority shareholders of its shopping centre unit, less than a decade after floating shares in the company.

FILE PHOTO: The corporate logo of EMAAR is seen in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/ Hamad I Mohammed

The all-share deal comes as both businesses have seen profits plunge over the past year due to the coronavirus pandemic as fewer overseas visitors travel to Dubai.

Emaar Properties, which already owns close to 85% of Emaar Malls, will swap 0.51 of its own shares with shareholders of Emaar Malls, the two companies said.

That values Emaar Malls, which operates Dubai’s largest shopping centre, Dubai Mall, at 24 billion dirham ($6.53 billion), according to Reuters calculations.

Each Emaar Malls share is valued at 1.85 dirhams in the deal, a 10% premium based on its last closing price, Reuters calculated.

Emaar Malls, as a wholly owned subsidiary of Emaar Properties, will continue to develop and operate shopping centres and retail assets, the companies said.

Emaar Properties, roughly 30% owned by state fund Investment Corp Dubai, will remain listed on the Dubai stock market.

Emaar Properties last month reported a 58% fall in 2020 net profit to 2.62 billion dirhams, while Emaar Malls’ yearly net profit dropped 70% to 704 million dirhams.

Emaar Properties raised about $1.6 billion listing Emaar Malls in 2014.

($1 = 3.6728 UAE dirham)

Reporting by Saeed Azhar in Dubai, additional writing by Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Steve Orlofsky; Editing by Alexander Smith