UAE businessman Mohamed Alabbar, founder of Emaar Properties, has said the property developer could raise dividends this year, while confirming that Noon, the online retailer he co-founded, has no immediate plans for an initial public offering.
“Investors will submit a proposal to Emaar Properties' board of directors to discuss increasing dividends for shareholders in 2023, in line with the company's commitment to shareholder rights,” Mr Alabbar told state news agency Wam.
Emaar Properties, Dubai's largest listed developer, reported a 15 per cent surge in its first-half profit as Dubai's property market continues to boom amid economic growth in the country.
Net profit for the six months to the end of June climbed to Dh4.9 billion ($1.3 billion), the company said earlier this month.
Mr Alabbar expects Emaar Properties to “continue to achieve favourable financial results in the upcoming quarters, supported by a strong sales track record, indicating sustained growth”, Wam reported.
The company's board is also developing long-term plans for the next 15 to 20 years covering new projects, countries targeted for expansion, projected future risks, as well as investments in human capital, he said.
Meanwhile, the businessman also confirmed that there were no immediate plans for Noon to go public or list its shares on the financial markets.
However, he added that “such a step will be taken into consideration in the future, especially as the Arab world is in need of a publicly listed e-commerce entity”.
Noon's current focus is on accelerating growth and expansion across its key markets, which include the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, he said.
While the company plans to enter new markets, its primary concern is securing a strong foothold in its main markets, he added.
Noon, which is also backed by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund, was the fifth biggest e-commerce player in the UAE last year, with revenue of $167.6 million, data from ecommerceDB shows.
Amazon.ae leads the UAE market with revenues of $477.6 million in 2022, followed by namshi.com with sales of $264.8 million and then carrefouruae.com with $223.2 million. Apple.com is at the fourth place with US$196 million revenue, according to ecommerceDB.
Mr Alabbar, who is also chairman of Americana Restaurants, said the company's listing of its shares on the stock markets of Abu Dhabi and Saudi Arabia was a “monumental turning point in its history”.
Looking ahead, he said Americana has a target of launching around 250 to 260 new outlets by the end of the year, focusing on key markets, such as the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
Mr Alabbar stressed that the UAE has “consistently prioritised enhancing the business environment to attract investors of varying scales and sectors”, which has supported the growth of companies such as Emaar Properties, Noon and Americana.