UAE's first Spac to launch $100m Abu Dhabi IPO this week

ADC, set up by ADQ and Chimera Investments, plans to list shares on the ADX

ADC plans to list 36.7 million shares on the the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange. Photo: ADX
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ADC Acquisition Corporation, the UAE’s first special purpose acquisition company (Spac), will launch its initial public offering this week as it seeks to raise funds to acquire fast-growing technology-driven businesses.

The ADC IPO subscriptions, open for both retail and professional investors, will begin on May 12 and conclude on May 19, the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

Set up by Abu Dhabi-based holding company ADQ and private investment firm Chimera Investments, ADC is looking to raise Dh367 million ($100m) from the public float. It plans to list 36.7 million shares on the Abu Dhabi Securities (ADX) with an offer price of Dh10 per share.

“ADQ is committed to expanding the breadth of Abu Dhabi’s capital markets by creating opportunities for private companies to leverage its unique investment platform and footprint,” Mohamed Al Suwaidi, managing director and chief executive of ADQ, said.

The formation of ADC … supports that objective, and we are also excited by the prospect of retail and institutional investors from the UAE being able to partake in this long-term strategy for unlocking the UAE’s growth potential,” Mr Al Suwaidi, who is also chairman of ADC, added.

The Spac aims to acquire businesses that are based, or have their main operations, in the Middle East and North Africa region.

While ADC will be open to pursuing acquisition opportunities across industries and sectors, it plans to target businesses with scalable revenue base that is underpinned by long-term fundamentals, transformational technologies and experienced management teams.

A Spac, or a blank-cheque company as it is known, is a vehicle with no commercial operations that is formed with the purpose of raising funds through public listing and then acquiring an existing company.

Spacs have lighter disclosure requirements and are increasingly becoming popular in the Middle East. Abu Dhabi Global Market-based Anghami, the music streaming rival of Spotify in the Arab world, successfully listed on the Nasdaq in February by merging with a blank-cheque company.

ADC’s upcoming IPO on ADX will “facilitate quicker access to capital and operational expertise, result in lower fees, more transparency and allow investors across the region the opportunity to tap into a highly dynamic and fast growing new space within the UAE’s capital markets landscape”, Syed Shueb, chairman of Chimera Investments, said.

Updated: May 10, 2022, 9:51 AM