Arabtec shareholders’ restructuring vote scheduled

Company proposes raising Dh1.5 million through new shares issue and is planning to raise more cash through the disposal of non-core assets.

Arabtec proposed a restructuring that will see it raise Dh1.5 million through the issue of 1.5 million new shares. Reuters
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Shareholders in Arabtec Holding are due to vote on its proposed capital restructuring at its annual general meeting, which is scheduled for April 18.

The company has proposed a restructuring through which it will raise Dh1.5 billion by issuing 1.5 million new shares, initially taking the total number of shares in circulation to more than 6.1 million. Following this, a capital reduction will take place where 4.6 billion shares will be cancelled, freeing up the same amount of liabilities that can then be used to write off accumulated losses.

Aabar Investments, which is part of the government-owned investment fund Ipic, has already agreed to subscribe to its full entitlement under the issue. It owns 36.11 per cent of the shares in Arabtec but it has also pledged to buy up any excess shares that other investors do not subscribe to during the issue.

"In a construction company, you need two things: cash and people," Hamish Tyrwhitt, Arabtec's chief executive, told The National after the company recently filed accounts declaring a Dh3.4 billion loss for 2016.

The company has already identified several new management team members who are due to join in the coming months and, alongside the proposed Dh1.5bn rights issue, it is planning to raise more cash through the disposal of non-core assets.

“Those things that are investments we have – whether it is some shares in a company, a minority stake or partnerships in some things – once we’ve had a strategic review I’d be looking at recycling that capital into the core of the business,” said Mr Tyrwhitt.

Arabtec’s annual general meeting is set to take places at Ipic’s offices in Abu Dhabi.

The company’s shares closed 2.46 per cent up on Sunday.

mfahys@thenational.ae

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