Amanat plans to sell Middlesex University Dubai to Study World Education Group

Dubai-listed investment company signs sale and purchase deal for the campus

Amanat is planning to sell Middlesex University Dubai to Study World Education Holding Group. Sarah Dea/The National
Amanat is planning to sell Middlesex University Dubai to Study World Education Holding Group. Sarah Dea/The National

Amanat Holdings looks set to offload its Middlesex University Dubai campus after signing a sale and purchase agreement with Study World Education Holding Group.

The company did not give a sale price or any details concerning the transaction but said it would “update the market if and when there are any material developments in this regard” in a statement to the Dubai Financial Market, where its shares trade.

“The transaction is subject to the satisfactory completion of customary conditions, including regulatory approvals and [an] estimation of final consideration,” the company said.

Set up in 2014, Amanat has investments across a number of sectors such as education, health care and property.

In education, its portfolio includes school operator Taaleem, Abu Dhabi University Holding Company and Middlesex University Dubai. It also owns the property assets of the North London Collegiate School in Dubai.

The company’s healthcare assets include hospitals in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

Study World Education was founded by Indian businesswoman Vidhya Vinod and operates schools in Dubai, India, Sri Lanka and Malta, according to its website.

Middlesex University’s Dubai campus opened in January 2005 and has more than 3,500 students from more than 100 countries. Amanat acquired the campus in 2018 for about $100 million (Dh367m) from the liquidators of private equity firm Abraaj, according to Bloomberg.

Amanat said in May that it would take measures to reduce costs amid the coronavirus-induced economic slowdown, while its senior management agreed to a voluntary pay cut.

However, the company said it would continue to look for growth opportunities and explore regional investments.

The company plans to move its headquarters to Abu Dhabi and list its shares on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange.

It recently appointed Mohamad Hamade as its new chief executive.

Amanat's profit grew by 40 per cent to Dh60m last year as income from investments rose and expenses fell.

Updated: July 21, 2020 02:54 AM

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