Taaleem IPO: Dubai school operator sets offer price range as subscription begins

Company may have a market of value of $817m at the time of listing on November 29

Taaleem's Raha International School in Abu Dhabi. The company will use the proceeds of its public offering to add four additional schools to its portfolio. Khushnum Bhandari / The National
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Dubai school operator Taaleem Holdings has set the price range of its shares as part of its initial public offering that seeks to raise Dh750 million ($204m).

The company set the price range between Dh2.95 and Dh3.00 per share, implying a market capitalisation of between Dh2.96 billion and Dh3bn ($817m) at the time of listing.

The company is selling up to 254.2 million shares, or a 25.32 per cent stake, with 5 per cent reserved for the Emirates Investment Authority.

The IPO subscription period starts today and is expected to close on November 16 for UAE retail investors and eligible employees and parents, with subscriptions expected to close on November 17 for professional investors.

Taaleem is offering 10 per cent of its offering to retail investors, 88 per cent to professional investors and the remaining 2 per cent to eligible employees and parents.

The final offer price will be announced on November 18 and the shares of the company are expected to start trading on the Dubai Financial Market on November 29.

“We have seen strong interest in our IPO since announcing our intention to float," said Alan Williamson, chief executive of Taaleem.

"Taaleem has delivered a solid growth story for nearly 20 years ... proceeds from this IPO will help fund and accelerate the expansion of our K-12 premium schools network in the UAE and we will be even better positioned to provide greater access to our high-quality, aspirational education offering.”

Taaleem, formerly known as Beacon Education, was founded in Dubai in 2004. It currently operates 26 schools across the UAE offering British and American curriculums as well as the International Baccalaureate to more than 27,000 pupils.

Taaleem will use proceeds from the listing to fund plans for four new premium schools in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Taleem plans to pay a dividend of Dh67.5m relating to its financial performance during the year ended August 31, 2022. The dividend will be paid to shareholders before the closing date of the IPO.

The company intends to pay dividends “at least at the current levels” and to increase its dividends in line with future earnings growth.

EFG Hermes and Emirates NBD Capital have been appointed joint lead managers on the offering.

Taaleem's IPO is part of a wave of listings on UAE capital markets that have performed better than global stock markets, buoyed by increased liquidity from higher oil prices and strong investor demand.

On Wednesday, Emirates Central Cooling Systems Corporation (Empower), Dubai's district cooling provider, raised more than Dh2.6bn through its offering that was more than 47 times oversubscribed.

Dubai's plans to bolster the size of its capital markets, with plans to list 10 state-owned companies and boosting the size of the emirate's financial market to about Dh3 trillion.

The emirate is also aiming to set up a Dh2bn market maker fund to encourage the listing of more private companies from sectors such as energy, logistics and retail.

Updated: November 10, 2022, 7:51 AM