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Friday, 27 April 2012

Kerzner Deal Hands Atlantis Bahamas to Brookfield, Palm to Dubai - Bloomberg

Kerzner International Holdings Ltd., the company that built Atlantis resorts in the Bahamas and Dubai, has handed ownership of its flagship properties to creditor Brookfield (BAM) Asset Management and partner Dubai World in a debt restructuring.
Kerzner sold a 50 percent stake in Atlantis the Palm in Dubai to resort co-owner Istithmar World, a unit of Dubai World, for $250 million, according to a statement. Brookfield will forgive about $175 million of junior debt for ownership of the Bahamas-based Atlantis Paradise Island, and the adjacent Bahamas One&Only Ocean Club. The transactions closed today.

Question marks hang over Qatar buying in Xstrata | Reuters

Qatar's 7 percent stake in Xstrata (XTA.L), makes it not only the miner's largest investor after Glencore, but also a potential kingmaker in the two companies' merger and an unknown quantity for its future that investors are desperate to read.

The reclusive sovereign wealth fund has been steadily buying Xstrata shares, spending some $2.7 billion (1.6 billion pounds) to lift its holding from below 3 percent at the start of February, when the tie-up with commodities trader Glencore (GLEN.L) was announced.

It has bought virtually every day this month, a crucial period of courting for miner Xstrata and commodities trader Glencore, as the two jointly toured key investment funds.

Dewey & LeBoeuf Approaches Deadline on $75 Million Bank Debt - Businessweek

Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, the No. 3 law firm adviser to banks handling merger deals, is nearing an April 30 deadline to show bank lenders it has a survival plan, possibly including absorption by another firm or cost-cutting.

Dewey, based in New York, has lost about 72 partners in recent months amid complaints about pay and a plan to restructure the firm. It has drawn about $75 million of a $100 million credit line from banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc. (C) (C), according to a person familiar with the firm’s finances. The banks extended an initial April 16 deadline to come up with a plan, according to another person familiar with a merger proposal Dewey has presented to other law firms.

Last month, as defections mounted, Dewey restructured its chairman’s office to include the heads of four practice groups in addition to Chairman Steven Davis. The group includes Martin Bienenstock, who runs the firm’s restructuring group; Rich Shutran, head of the corporate department; Jeffrey Kessler, head of litigation; and Charles Landgraf, who runs the Washington office and the legislative and public policy group.

gulfnews : Kuwait Finance House profit drops

Kuwait Finance House, the country's leading Islamic bank, said Thursday its net profit in the first quarter of 2012 dropped 11.3 per cent compared to the same period last year. KFH posted a net profit of 20.1 million dinars (Dh265 million) in the first three months of this year compared to 22.6 million dinars in the same quarter of 2011, the bank said in a statement on the bourse's website. The drop in the first quarter profit came despite increases in assets and shareholders' equity. KFH said its assets as on March 31 increased 11.2 per cent to $51 billion (Dh187 billion) from $45.9 billion a year ago and its shareholders' equity rose marginally to $4.57 billion from $4.53 billion a year ago.

Dana Gas chief plans to step down - The National

Ahmed Al Arbeed, the chief executive of Dana Gas, will retire in September, a month before the company is due to repay a US$1 billion (Dh3.67bn) sukuk that has been causing jitters in the financial markets.

The news comes after it emerged this week that Dana, the only publicly listed gas producer in the region, has appointed the US private-equity firm Blackstone Group to help it restructure its debt, having already appointed Deutsche Bank to this end this year.

The yield on Dana's Sharia-compliant bond rose by almost 2 percentage points to 62.85 per cent yesterday, the highest since January.

Arabic should be treasured and given pride of place - The National

A few days ago, my mother and I attended Cityscape, a property convention held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. Before entering the exhibition halls, we had to fill out a registration form handed to us by event organisers.

Having gone to an American school, then a British university, I barely pay attention to small details such as the fact that the form we had to fill out was available only in English, although the majority of people at the event were Emiratis.

My mother gazed at the form for a few seconds before asking the person issuing the form why there were no Arabic-language forms available, or at least a form that used both languages. After all, many people here do not speak English very well and might have a hard time filling out the form, which required many details.

Iraq's bourse chief packs clout and heat - The National

The head of the Iraq Stock Exchange may be one of the few market chiefs who have to deal with bulls and bears as well as bombings and lootings. He has seen the bourse grow from a 'hand on a board' to a fully automated exchange. Hadeel Al Sayegh reports from Baghdad:

Dubai’s re-return to the bond market | beyondbrics – FT.com

We’re not in 2009 any more, Toto. Dubai’s second sovereign bond issue since its debt crisis and near-default went ahead without a hiccup on Thursday, with the $1.25bn, two-tranche Islamic sukuk more than 3.5 times oversubscribed by institutional investors.

When the emirate announced in November 2009 that it would seek a debt standstill from creditors of state-owned Dubai World – and made clear there was no guarantee of sovereign support for the state-backed enterprises that drive much of its development – some thought it would be a long time before international lenders would again trust the city with their money.

In reality, it was less than a year before Dubai made its way back into the debt markets, with both a $1.25bn sovereign bond and a $500m convertible bond by government-owned Emaar Properties being issued on the same day in late September, 2010.

Dubai Holding proves to be sweet spot of emirate's recovery - The National

The Dubai conglomerate that owns the Jumeirah Group and Tecom has boosted profits and reduced its debt, helped by the emirate's rebounding tourism and retail sectors.

Dubai Holding Commercial Operations Group (DHCOG), which also owns Dubai Properties Group, reported that its annual net profit surged 44 per cent to Dh324.3 million (US$88.2m) as it reduced its cost base and increased margins.

But the results also included a Dh2.4 billion impairment related to its property assets and part of its telecommunications portfolio.

THE DAILY STAR :: Dubai’s ‘burn the banks’ tactic cheers investors

Healthy demand for Dubai’s first sovereign bond issue in nearly a year shows how pleased investors are by the emirate’s strategy of scrupulously honoring its public debt obligations while playing hardball in restructuring bank loans.

Dubbed “burn the banks, bail out the bond holders” by investment bank Exotix, the strategy seems to involve doing what it takes to ensure bond maturities of government-related enterprises are repaid on time. In February a unit of Dubai Holding, owned by the emirate’s ruler, said it was using internal cash flow to fully repay a maturing $500 million sukuk.

At the same time Dubai is becoming increasingly forceful in pressing banks to restructure syndicated loans. This month Dubai Drydocks World began using a special tribunal, created under a decree by Dubai’s ruler, to force creditors to sign up to its $2.2 billion debt plan.

Qatar’s QInvest May Own Majority of New Bank With EFG-Hermes - Bloomberg

EFG-Hermes Holding SAE said Qatar’s QInvest LLC may hold a majority stake in a planned investment bank that would take over the Egyptian bank’s brokerage, investment banking and asset management businesses.
The investment bank would be the largest in “the Arab World, Africa, Turkey, South and South East Asia, with the possibility of QInvest holding majority stake,” Cairo-based EFG-Hermes said in a statement today. QInvest, a unit of Qatar Islamic Bank (QIBK), concluded talks to buy a 60 percent stake in EFG- Hermes, Egypt’s Al Shorouk newspaper reported yesterday, citing an unidentified person familiar with the talks.
The investment may help EFG-Hermes ride Egypt’s worst political and economic crisis in at least 30 years after last year’s popular uprising. Profit of the largest publicly traded Arab investment bank slumped 81 percent slump in 2011 and its shares plunged 63 percent, under-performing the benchmark index. The shares gained 9 percent, the most since Nov. 29, to 14.01 pounds at the 2:30 p.m. close in Cairo, valuing the company at 6.7 billion pounds ($1.1 billion).

Qatar tipped for carrier alliance - The National

One or more of the three major Gulf carriers will join an airline alliance this year, according to the boss of two of Europe's largest airlines.

"I personally believe the industry has matured to a point where we'll see Middle East carriers joining the alliances this year. I'd be amazed if this doesn't happen," said Willie Walsh, the chief executive of International Airlines Group, which owns British Airways and Iberia, both part of the oneworld alliance.

"Within oneworld we have been debating it. To my mind they [the Gulf carriers] are the key players", said Mr Walsh, who tipped Qatar Airways to be the most likely to sign up.

Qatar Telecom stock offer spurs market - Arab News

Most Gulf bourses fell ahead of the weekend as investors, eyeing a string of on target earnings results, booked recent gains while Egyptian investment bank EFG Hermes surged after a report it had finalized talks to sell a stake to Qatar’s QInvest.

Qatar’s benchmark rose as Qatar Telecom supported the benchmark with a 4.5 percent gain. Investors picked up the stock after the firm said it would increase capital through issuing new shares.

It will give two new shares for every five held to existing shareholders, it said in a bourse statement.

Gulf Countries Splurge at Home - WSJ.com

Booming oil prices are flooding Arab countries with money, but where the lion's share of that wealth would once have been pumped into the world's financial markets, much of it is now being spent at home.

Gulf states are embarking on their biggest spending spree on record as they lavish funds on domestic projects—from new housing and hospitals to mosque restoration and job creation—largely as a defensive response to the Arab Spring uprisings that toppled other Middle East governments last year. Government outlays in the region are set to reach $488.6 billion this year, according to recent Institute of International Finance estimates, up 35% from 2009's figure.

DIFC Investments may be cut at S&P on Sukuk refinance risk - bi-me.com

DIFC Investments LLC, which owns properties in Dubai’s tax-free financial center, may have its credit rating cut at Standard & Poor’s due to “heightened refinancing risk” on its US$1.25 billion Islamic bond due in June.

DIFC Investments “has little room for delays in its efforts to secure a bank loan and government support to refinance the sukuk,” the rating agency said in a statement. The B+ long-term and B short-term ratings were placed on creditwatch with negative outlook.

DIFC Investments started talks with banks for a loan to help pay the bond, two bankers with knowledge of the plan said in March. The company plans to raise $900 million to $1 billion from a five-year syndicated loan and will make up the rest with its own cash, said the bankers, who declined to be identified because the information is private.

DIFC Investments may be cut at S&P on Sukuk refinance risk - bi-me.com

DIFC Investments LLC, which owns properties in Dubai’s tax-free financial center, may have its credit rating cut at Standard & Poor’s due to “heightened refinancing risk” on its US$1.25 billion Islamic bond due in June.

DIFC Investments “has little room for delays in its efforts to secure a bank loan and government support to refinance the sukuk,” the rating agency said in a statement. The B+ long-term and B short-term ratings were placed on creditwatch with negative outlook.

DIFC Investments started talks with banks for a loan to help pay the bond, two bankers with knowledge of the plan said in March. The company plans to raise $900 million to $1 billion from a five-year syndicated loan and will make up the rest with its own cash, said the bankers, who declined to be identified because the information is private.

MENA stock markets close April 26, 2012

 ExchangeStatus IndexChange  
 
 TASI (Saudi Stock Market)
 
7541.50.39%  
 
 DFM (Dubai Financial Market)
 
1651.9-0.50%  
 
 ADX (Abudhabi Securities Exchange)
 
2507.9-0.17%  
 
 KSE (Kuwait Stock Exchange)
 
63370.01%  
 
 BSE (Bahrain Stock Exchange)
 
1145.24-0.20%  
 
 MSM (Muscat Securities Market)
 
5839.19-1.26%  
 
 QE (Qatar Exchange)
 
8661.460.10%  
 
 LSE (Beirut Stock Exchange)
 
1180.750.30%  
 
 EGX 30 (Egypt Exchange)
 
4934.920.54%  
 
 ASE (Amman Stock Exchange)
 
1989.85-0.63%  
 
 TUNINDEX (Tunisia Stock Exchange)
 
5095.720.22%  
 
 CB (Casablanca Stock Exchange)
 
10330.7-0.06%  
 
 PSE (Palestine Securities Exchange)
 
-
 
469.970.00%