Dar Al Takaful and Watania edge closer to completion of merger

Deal will create the largest Sharia-compliant insurer in the UAE, once shareholder approval is obtained

Dar Al Takaful will remain listed the Dubai Financial Market after the merger. Reuters
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Sharia-compliant insurers Dar Al Takaful and National Takaful Company, better known as Watania, are edging closer to the completion of a merger that will create the UAE’s largest Islamic insurance provider, once they receive creditor approval for the deal.

The two companies have completed the “condition precedent” of bringing their creditors on board after the 30-day period for creditors to send their opinions and objections on the deal ended on May 26, the companies said on Wednesday.

Watania also issued a notice to its policyholders in April. Their 45-day period to provide feedback or object to the proposed merger will end on June 10.

As companies progress towards completing the transaction, “we are actively preparing for our integration of all aspects of the two companies into a single takaful powerhouse for the benefit of customers and other stakeholders”, Dar Al Takaful chairman Matar Al Ameri.

Together, the two companies will provide “superior terms and policy coverage across the UAE through a growing range of innovative products”.

The shareholders of Dar Al Takaful and Watania voted separately in favour of the merger in April.

The deal is expected to be complete by the end of June, the companies said in a joint filing at the time to the Dubai Financial Market and the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, where their shares are currently traded.

In the share-swap deal, Watania shareholders will receive shares in Dar Al Takaful, which will be the entity that will continue to remain listed on the DFM, the two companies said.

Under the terms of the merger, Watania shareholders will receive 0.734375 Dar Al Takaful shares for every Watania share they own, valuing the merged company at Dh260 million ($70.8m).

“The operational synergies from the merger and the fusion of the energy and ideas of both companies will enable us to offer many compelling solutions to the market,” said Watania chairman Ali Aldhaheri.

“We look forward to supporting the UAE’s global leadership in Islamic finance.”

The two companies have obtained preliminary approval for the deal from the UAE Central Bank and the Securities and Commodities Authority. The merger is subject to final regulatory approvals.

Mr Aldaheri will lead the merged entity as chairman while Mr Al Ameri will become vice chairman, the companies said on Wednesday.

Updated: June 08, 2022, 9:45 AM