Shuaa launches $200m credit fund for GCC corporates and developers

The new fund is the fourth investment vehicle rolled out by the company in 2020

Dubai investment bank Shuaa Capital has raised more than $140m in the last three months from investors. Pawan Singh / The National

Dubai investment banking firm Shuaa Capital launched a $200 million fund, further expanding its asset management platform and product offering to investors.

The fund targeting special situations across Gulf countries has already attracted a total of $68m in commitments from investors, Shuaa said in a statement on Sunday to the Dubai Financial Market, where its shares trade.

Shuaa Financing Opportunities Fund is the fourth investment vehicle rolled out by the company this year. The asset management firm has raised more than $140m in the past three months from investors, it said.

The latest fund is Shuaa’s first dedicated financing vehicle. The closed-ended fund with a four-year tenor will target investments in senior, mezzanine and uni-tranche Sharia-compliant financing for corporates and developers operating in the GCC.

"Against the backdrop of a changing regulatory and business environment, several project deals and assets in liquidity-hit sectors are unable to progress or fulfil certain obligations, particularly due to the challenges posed by Covid-19,” Jassim Alseddiqi, chief executive of Shuaa, said.

“Despite the challenging market conditions for borrowers, Shuaa believes that there are attractive opportunities in the GCC market that will generate appropriate risk-adjusted returns for its investors, in key sectors including healthcare, real estate, hospitality, construction and shipping.”

Opportunities in the current market environment include requirements for short-term recapitalisations, growth capital, bridge loans and acquisition financing, he said.

The company’s investment team has already identified several opportunities in the region to provide last-mile funding for projects.

“We look forward to jump-starting these key projects towards their successful completion and continuing to support their future goals as our economy moves into a recovery phase," Mr Alseddiqi said.

Earlier this month, Shuaa launched three Sharia-compliant, open-ended funds with initial investment commitments of $75m. The funds, targeting qualified institutional investors, were launched through the company's wholly owned subsidiary, Shuaa GMC, which is regulated by the ADGM Financial Services Regulatory Authority, it said in a statement at the time.

The three funds – Shuaa High Yield Sukuk Fund, Nujoom Aggressive Fund and Nujoom Balanced Fund – are part of Shuaa’s platform rolled out in Abu Dhabi’s international financial hub.

Shuaa manages $13 billion in assets and plans to expand its investment banking and asset management businesses to boost AUMS to $20bn.

The company’s expansion strategy involves growing its regional footprint as it looks to boost recurring income through new products, permanent capital vehicles and expanding its fixed income business, Shuaa said in March.