GFH Financial Group, an investment bank based in Bahrain, has received approval from its shareholders to cross-list its shares on both the Saudi Stock Exchange and the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, it announced on Sunday.
Listed on the Bahrain Bourse, Dubai Financial Market and Boursa Kuwait, GFH has an investment portfolio that spans the Middle East, the US, the UK and Asia in a number of sectors including health care, education and logistics.
The listing on Tadawul and ADX is "subject to obtaining the necessary approvals", and shareholders "delegated the board of directors the required powers to implement and complete the listings", a statement said.
Shareholders also approved the board’s recommendation to distribute a total dividend of $60 million as the company’s business units performed strongly in 2021 despite Covid-19 headwinds.
“We have a strong pipeline of opportunities for 2022 and look forward to building our diverse portfolio across key markets," said Hisham Alrayes, chief executive of GFH.
"We remain agile and prepared to capitalise on new opportunities as and when they arise to the benefit of our shareholders and the communities in which we operate.”
GFH reported an 86.77 per cent surge in its 2021 profit to $84.22m, reflecting “stronger contributions throughout the year from all business lines including investment banking, commercial banking, real estate and treasury activities".
Total assets of the group grew 22.72 per cent to $8.08 billion at the end of last year.
GFH also closed more than $1bn worth of new investments across the region in the international logistics, health care and education sectors in 2021.
In January this year, GFH formed a new subsidiary, Infracorp, by spinning off its infrastructure and property assets to focus more on financial assets. Infracorp will manage an asset portfolio worth about $3bn, which includes land in the Gulf, North Africa and South Asia.
Its dividend for 2021 includes cash profits for all ordinary shares, save for treasury shares, at 4.57 per cent of the share’s nominal value, equal to $45m, said the statement.
The recommendation also includes bonus shares of 1.5 per cent of the nominal value of all ordinary shares, equal to $15m, GFH said.
“We are pleased to see shareholders approve the distribution of a solid dividend despite continued geopolitical and economic volatility,” Mr Alrayes said.