Mobily set to reissue financial statements after Eid holiday

Mobily has been under investigation by the Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority since late last year, and the regulator has assigned a special team to look into Mobily’s finances.

Shares of Mobily have been suspended from trading at the Saudi stock market since June 8. Fayez Nureldine / AFP
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Saudi Arabia’s second-biggest telecoms operator Etihad Etisalat, or Mobily, expects to reissue its financial statements after the Eid Al Fitre break late this month.

The move would be a significant step towards the lifting of the suspension on the trading of the company’s shares.

Mobily has been under investigation by the Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority since last year, and the regulator has assigned a special team to look into Mobily’s finances, which has raised concerns over the some of Mobily’s accounting ethods.

Shares of Mobily were suspended from trading on June 8.

“Mobily will reissue its financial statements for 2014 and the first quarter of 2015 after the Eid break,” a source familiar with the matter said. “Afterwards, the second-quarter results will be released.”

Last month, Mobily said that its losses would widen in 2014 by 830 million Saudi riyals (Dh812.9m) to 1.7 billion riyals. But the changes would also reduce its losses for the first quarter of this year by 207m riyals, leading to a net profit of 8m riyals for the first quarter.

To add to Mobily’s woes, the firm had to have discussions with lenders after its financial statements were modified.

In March, when Mobily had previously reissued its financial statement for 2014 and restated its profit to a net loss, some covenants with lenders were breached. The company stated then that the breaches resulted in about 16bn Saudi riyals of loans being classified as current liabilities.

The UAE telecoms operator Etisalat, which owns a 27.5 per cent stake in Mobily, will also be affected by the revised statements. It said earlier that it would take a hit of Dh616m before federal royalty as a result of Mobily's accounting changes for last year.

Separately, Mobily's chairman Sulaiman Abdul Rahman Al Queiz told Al Sharq Al Awsat newspaper the appointment of a new chief executive will be announced soon. Mobily removed the former CEO, Khalid Al Kaf, n February.

selgazzar@thenational.ae

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