Owner of St Regis Saadiyat Island sold in Dh1.7bn deal

Murban, which also owns the Al Wathba Luxury Collection desert resort, has been sold to IHC subsidiary Alpha Dhabi

The UAE-based company that owns the St Regis resort at Saadiyat Island and the Luxury Collection Desert Resort at Al Wathba has been sold in a deal worth Dh1.7 billion ($462.9 million).

The privately-owned vehicle, Murban, has been bought by Alpha Dhabi Holding, a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi's International Holding Company. Murban also has an agreement in place to build another luxury resort in the Aceh province in Indonesia and it owns the Le Noir Cafe brand.

“We are excited by the opportunity to accelerate our global exposure with our investment in Murban, which has a highly complementary business and asset portfolio," Mohamed Al Rumaithi, chairman of Alpha Dhabi Holding, said.

Alpha Dhabi is a construction-focussed group with more than 40,000 employees that has built a range of projects including mixed-use and high-rise property, mass housing and infrastructure. The group already had a hospitality development division that has built hotels in the UAE, Morocco, Russia and the UK.

Alpha Dhabi, which was previously known as Trojan Holding, became a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi-listed International Holding Company after it purchased a 45 per cent stake in the group in March for an undisclosed sum.

IHC has been on an acquisition spree over the past 18 months that has seen its value soar. The company is now the third-biggest on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, with a market cap of more than Dh172 billion ($46.8bn).

"We are pleased to have helped identified the synergies that Murban share with Alpha Dhabi and to bring the two companies together. As a key shareholder in the business, we look forward to supporting the management team to continue their success and build long-term shareholder value for IHC," said the company's chief executive Syed Shueb.

Hamad Al Ameri, Alpha Dhabi's managing director said the deal places it in "a unique position" to pursue new opportunities in different markets "through Murban’s rich asset portfolio".