Communications is central to pre-flight checklist for IPOs



The key to publicly listing a company is having a long-term vision and strategy which smooths out short-term volatility and delivers value to shareholders over the longer term. For businesses seeking to launch an IPO, here is a five-point checklist to help you achieve that goal as you embark on the path to becoming a listed company:

1. Plan ahead

The IPO process will be one of the biggest changes to any business, and it needs to be very carefully planned. This will include planning for the establishment of appropriate internal processes and procedures, particularly on auditing of the accounts, through to the operating structure of the business. Before approaching the relevant regulatory authority for your plans to IPO, your company needs to be as compliant as possible as a prospective public company.

2. Controlled disclosure of information

Before a formal announcement is made to communicate the company’s intention to list, ensure communications are controlled, well-timed and adhere to market regulations. Through media and presentation training, spokespeople need to be briefed and coached on what they can and cannot say from the beginning of the IPO process.

3. Establish a “normal and customary” flow of communications

As a private entity, it is never too early to open communication channels with key participants in your chosen capital market and to begin building a strong public image. This would include communicating both the organisational changes you have made to the business in order for it to grow, and the progress the business is making towards its objectives. Once advisers are appointed and the IPO application is filed with the relevant capital market authorities, your external communications will be highly regulated and legally binding not only to the company but also, in some cases, with directors of the company being personally liable over what is stated publicly. Ideally, regular PR outreach should start at least one year before the filing date.

4. Think, act and perform like a public company

A robust public image cannot be achieved overnight. Implementation of the communications campaign should effectively build your profile with investors and with those who will influence the investment decision such as financial media, industry publications and financial analysts. If you are communicating in a language that investors already understand, this will speed up the process of educating prospective investors on your company’s investment case. Public companies need to adhere to good governance procedures, with the correct balance of executives and non-executives on the board, transparent financials and a clearly communicated growth strategy. The more protection provided to the investors, the more attractive the investment proposition will be and the higher the subsequent rating.

5. Profile the expertise of the management team

The investment community wants to know whether the management team has the right experience and capabilities to take the company to its next stage of growth. This will show investors that the company is well governed and likely to demonstrate sustainable returns and the building of shareholder value. The corporate communications campaign should demonstrate the strength in depth of the business, as well as best practices on governance to ensure that shareholders are represented appropriately on the board.

Nowhere is this more relevant than in the case of a greenfield IPO, which is the listing of a start-up with no assets or operations. For example, the founders of Marka are some of the best-known business figures in the UAE, which led to a high-profile listing on the Dubai Financial Market and an IPO that was 36 times oversubscribed. Dubai Parks and Resorts is another example of high-profile greenfield IPOs that listed last year and was oversubscribed multiple times.

A strong public profile and open communication will help the market better understand and subsequently build confidence in senior management’s ability to deliver future growth. The more investors trust you, the more likely they are to buy and hold your shares – a classic communication principle about the importance of building trust which also applies to investment decisions.

Bobby Morse, based in London, is a co-founder at H+K Financial. Anca Cighi, based in Dubai, is senior consultant at H+K Financial.

business@thenational.ae

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England-South Africa Test series

1st Test England win by 211 runs at Lord's, London

2nd Test South Africa win by 340 runs at Trent Bridge, Nottingham

3rd Test July 27-31 at The Oval, London

4th Test August 4-8 at Old Trafford, Manchester

The burning issue

The internal combustion engine is facing a watershed moment – major manufacturer Volvo is to stop producing petroleum-powered vehicles by 2021 and countries in Europe, including the UK, have vowed to ban their sale before 2040. The National takes a look at the story of one of the most successful technologies of the last 100 years and how it has impacted life in the UAE. 

Read part four: an affection for classic cars lives on

Read part three: the age of the electric vehicle begins

Read part one: how cars came to the UAE

 

Sarfira

Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad

Starring: Akshay Kumar, Radhika Madan, Paresh Rawal

Rating: 2/5

Quick facts
  • Storstockholms Lokaltrafik (SL) offers free guided tours of art in the metro and at the stations
  • The tours are free of charge; all you need is a valid SL ticket, for which a single journey (valid for 75 minutes) costs 39 Swedish krone ($3.75)
  • Travel cards for unlimited journeys are priced at 165 Swedish krone for 24 hours
  • Avoid rush hour – between 9.30 am and 4.30 pm – to explore the artwork at leisure
COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: Klipit

Started: 2022

Founders: Venkat Reddy, Mohammed Al Bulooki, Bilal Merchant, Asif Ahmed, Ovais Merchant

Based: Dubai, UAE

Industry: Digital receipts, finance, blockchain

Funding: $4 million

Investors: Privately/self-funded

Abu Dhabi GP schedule

Friday: First practice - 1pm; Second practice - 5pm

Saturday: Final practice - 2pm; Qualifying - 5pm

Sunday: Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix (55 laps) - 5.10pm

Company Profile

Name: Direct Debit System
Started: Sept 2017
Based: UAE with a subsidiary in the UK
Industry: FinTech
Funding: Undisclosed
Investors: Elaine Jones
Number of employees: 8

Company Profile

Company name: Namara
Started: June 2022
Founder: Mohammed Alnamara
Based: Dubai
Sector: Microfinance
Current number of staff: 16
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Family offices

COMPANY PROFILE

Company: Eco Way
Started: December 2023
Founder: Ivan Kroshnyi
Based: Dubai, UAE
Industry: Electric vehicles
Investors: Bootstrapped with undisclosed funding. Looking to raise funds from outside

Results:

5pm: Abu Dhabi Fillies Classic (PA) Prestige Dh 110,000 1.400m | Winner: AF Mouthirah, Tadhg O’Shea (jockey), Ernst Oertel (trainer)

5.30pm: Abu Dhabi Colts Classic (PA) Prestige Dh 110,000 1,400m | Winner: AF Saab, Antonio Fresu, Ernst Oertel

6pm: Maiden (PA) Dh 80,000 1,600m | Winner: Majd Al Gharbia, Saif Al Balushi, Ridha ben Attia

6.30pm: Abu Dhabi Championship (PA) Listed Dh 180,000 1,600m | Winner: RB Money To Burn, Pat Cosgrave, Eric Lemartinel

7pm: Wathba Stallions Cup (PA) Handicap Dh 70,000 2,200m | Winner: AF Kafu, Tadhg O’Shea, Ernst Oertel

7.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh 100,000 2,400m | Winner: Brass Ring, Fabrice Veron, Ismail Mohammed

Company profile

Name: Pyppl

Established: 2017

Founders: Antti Arponen and Phil Reynolds

Based: UAE

Sector: financial services

Investment: $18.5 million

Employees: 150

Funding stage: series A, closed in 2021

Investors: venture capital companies, international funds, family offices, high-net-worth individuals

The Year Earth Changed

Directed by:Tom Beard

Narrated by: Sir David Attenborough

Stars: 4

HEY MERCEDES, WHAT CAN YOU DO FOR ME?

Mercedes-Benz's MBUX digital voice assistant, Hey Mercedes, allows users to set up commands for:

• Navigation

• Calls

• In-car climate

• Ambient lighting

• Media controls

• Driver assistance

• General inquiries such as motor data, fuel consumption and next service schedule, and even funny questions

There's also a hidden feature: pressing and holding the voice command button on the steering wheel activates the voice assistant on a connected smartphone – Siri on Apple's iOS or Google Assistant on Android – enabling a user to command the car even without Apple CarPlay or Android Auto

Bangladesh tour of Pakistan

January 24 – First T20, Lahore

January 25 – Second T20, Lahore

January 27 – Third T20, Lahore

February 7-11 – First Test, Rawalpindi

April 3 – One-off ODI, Karachi

April 5-9 – Second Test, Karachi

UAE central contracts

Full time contracts

Rohan Mustafa, Ahmed Raza, Mohammed Usman, Chirag Suri, Mohammed Boota, Sultan Ahmed, Zahoor Khan, Junaid Siddique, Waheed Ahmed, Zawar Farid

Part time contracts

Aryan Lakra, Ansh Tandon, Karthik Meiyappan, Rahul Bhatia, Alishan Sharafu, CP Rizwaan, Basil Hameed, Matiullah, Fahad Nawaz, Sanchit Sharma

Why does a queen bee feast only on royal jelly?

Some facts about bees:

The queen bee eats only royal jelly, an extraordinary food created by worker bees so she lives much longer

The life cycle of a worker bee is from 40-60 days

A queen bee lives for 3-5 years

This allows her to lay millions of eggs and allows the continuity of the bee colony

About 20,000 honey bees and one queen populate each hive

Honey is packed with vital vitamins, minerals, enzymes, water and anti-oxidants.

Apart from honey, five other products are royal jelly, the special food bees feed their queen 

Pollen is their protein source, a super food that is nutritious, rich in amino acids

Beewax is used to construct the combs. Due to its anti-fungal, anti-bacterial elements, it is used in skin treatments

Propolis, a resin-like material produced by bees is used to make hives. It has natural antibiotic qualities so works to sterilize hive,  protects from disease, keeps their home free from germs. Also used to treat sores, infection, warts

Bee venom is used by bees to protect themselves. Has anti-inflammatory properties, sometimes used to relieve conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, nerve and muscle pain

Honey, royal jelly, pollen have health enhancing qualities

The other three products are used for therapeutic purposes

Is beekeeping dangerous?

As long as you deal with bees gently, you will be safe, says Mohammed Al Najeh, who has worked with bees since he was a boy.

“The biggest mistake people make is they panic when they see a bee. They are small but smart creatures. If you move your hand quickly to hit the bees, this is an aggressive action and bees will defend themselves. They can sense the adrenalin in our body. But if we are calm, they are move away.”

 

 

LOVE AGAIN

Director: Jim Strouse

Stars: Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Sam Heughan, Celine Dion

Rating: 2/5

Most F1 world titles

7 — Michael Schumacher (1994, ’95, 2000, ’01 ’02, ’03, ’04)

7 — Lewis Hamilton (2008, ’14,’15, ’17, ’18, ’19, ’20)

5 — Juan Manuel Fangio (1951, ’54, ’55, ’56, ’57)

4 — Alain Prost (1985, ’86, ’89, ’93)

4 — Sebastian Vettel (2010, ’11, ’12, ’13)


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