Qatar Stock Exchange receives Ministry approval for Baladna IPO

Qatar Stock Exchange (QSE) has received approval from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry regarding the initial public offering (IPO) of Baladna, which is set to be listed very soon, said a top official of the Qatari bourse.

Baladna, one of the leading Qatari food producing companies, which helped Qatar achieve self-sufficient in terms of the production of fresh milk and other dairy products in record time, had announced its plans early last year to hold its IPO inspired by the wise vision of Emir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, and by the company’s desire to support the national production efforts through new projects that enhance the contribution of the private sector.

Baladna, in partnership with a group of Qatari investors, had appointed audit firms to carry out the necessary offering procedures. Any IPO must gain the approval of from the authorities concerned, including the Ministry of Commerce and Industry as well as the regulator Qatar Financial Markets Authority (QFMA).

“We have very recently received approval from Ministry of Commerce and Industry for the Baladna IPO, and are going to start the process of listing very soon,” Rashid bin Ali Al Mansoori, CEO of Qatar Stock Exchange (QSE), told The Peninsula.

Asked about a tentative date, Al Mansoori added: “We are in touch with the promoters of the company, and the exact date has not been decided yet, this depends on the shareholders’ decision. But what I can say is that it is going to be listed very soon.” Baladna recently announced that is now producing over 320 tonnes of fresh milk per day and has acquired more than 95 percent of the market share within 20 months after it ramped up production following the blockade.

The Baladna IPO will be the first listing at QSE in 2019. The last IPO was Qatar Aluminium Manufacturing Company (QAMCO) in November last year. Qamco IPO was oversubscribed by 2.5 times.

Despite facing more than 18 months of the ongoing unjust economic and political blockade, the QSE led the gainers among all the GCC stock markets registering the highest 21 percent rise in 2018. The emergence of QSE as the best markets in the region shows the resilience of the Qatari economy and its solid macroeconomic fundamentals.

“The Qatari bourse not only remained resilient despite the challenges, but emerged as one of the best performing markets in the world. This became possible as a result of a combination of factors, which can be largely attributed to the strong fundamentals of the Qatari economy, wise and visionary leadership, good governance and also the best staff at the QSE,” noted Al Mansoori.

Commenting on the stock split, he said splitting of nominal value of share prices from QR10 to QR1 is going to have positive impact as it will enhance liquidity in the market. This will also provide opportunity to small investors to participate in the stock market.

With regard to the listing of more family owned-businesses at the QSE, Al Mansoori said that a dedicated team of experts at the QSE has been working on that and trying to persuade and educated more such companies about the benefits of getting listed at the QSE.

Source from: The Peninsula