Saudi Arabia is Zain's largest sales earner.
Saudi Arabia is Zain's largest sales earner.

Zain third-quarter profits ahead of expectations



The Kuwaiti telecommunications operator Zain has reported third-quarter earnings that surpassed analyst expectations as the company moves closer to being taken over. Etisalat has offered to buy a 46 per cent stake in Zain for US$10.5 billion (Dh38.56bn). Kharafi Group, one of the largest private shareholders in Zain, is in the process of persuading enough of the operator's investors to approve the bid.

Zain reported net profits of 80.7 million Kuwaiti dinars (Dh1.04bn), a decrease of 58 per cent from the same quarter last year. The results, however, beat analysts' forecasts of 72.4m dinars. In its results, Zain included a one-time 770.3m dinar capital gain it received from Bharti Airtel from the sale of 15 of its African assets in June. Active subscribers across Zain's eight operations throughout the Middle East and Africa increased 25 per cent over the past year to 35.3 million.

"Several of our key markets are performing extremely well on many levels and are now reaping the rewards of the substantial network investments the company has made over the years," said Asaad al Banwan, the chairman of Zain. The operator highlighted its Saudi Arabian unit, which has become its largest sales earner with US$1.12bn (Dh4.11bn) in revenues for the first nine months of this year. If Zain's shareholders approve Etisalat's bid, the Saudi Arabia unit is likely to be sold off to avoid complications with the kingdom's telecoms regulators because the UAE operator already owns a mobile phone company in the country.

Zain also highlighted its success with its Iraqi unit, which reported revenues of $1.1bn and is the country's leading mobile operator with 11.8 million subscribers. The Iraqi unit is one of Zain's crown jewels and is highly coveted by Etisalat, which has tried unsuccessfully to enter the country's telecoms market several times. Representatives from both Zain and Etisalat declined to comment on the negotiations between the two operators.

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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

COMPANY PROFILE

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Started: 2018

Founders: George Karam and Kamil Rogalinski

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Funding size: $10m+

Investors: Middle East Venture Partners, Olayan Financing, Rua Growth Fund

How to vote

Canadians living in the UAE can register to vote online and be added to the International Register of Electors.

They'll then be sent a special ballot voting kit by mail either to their address, the Consulate General of Canada to the UAE in Dubai or The Embassy of Canada in Abu Dhabi

Registered voters mark the ballot with their choice and must send it back by 6pm Eastern time on October 21 (2am next Friday) 

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Colours: Deep purple, gold, silver, space black

In the box: iPhone 14 Pro Max, USB-C-to-Lightning cable, one Apple sticker

Price: Dh4,699 / Dh5,099 / Dh5,949 / Dh6,799

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Abu Dhabi GP schedule

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

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

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The UAE flag was first unveiled on December 2, 1971, the day the UAE was formed. 

It was designed by Abdullah Mohammed Al Maainah, 19, an Emirati from Abu Dhabi. 

Mr Al Maainah said in an interview with The National in 2011 he chose the colours for local reasons. 

The black represents the oil riches that transformed the UAE, green stands for fertility and the red and white colours were drawn from those found in existing emirate flags.

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2019 ASIA CUP POTS

Pot 1
UAE, Iran, Australia, Japan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia

Pot 2
China, Syria, Uzbekistan, Iraq, Qatar, Thailand

Pot 3
Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Palestine, Oman, India, Vietnam

Pot 4
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England 2 (Lingard 78', Kane 85')
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Man of the match: Harry Kane (England)

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Day 5, Abu Dhabi Test: At a glance

Moment of the day When Dilruwan Perera dismissed Yasir Shah to end Pakistan’s limp resistance, the Sri Lankans charged around the field with the fevered delirium of a side not used to winning. Trouble was, they had not. The delivery was deemed a no ball. Sri Lanka had a nervy wait, but it was merely a stay of execution for the beleaguered hosts.

Stat of the day – 5 Pakistan have lost all 10 wickets on the fifth day of a Test five times since the start of 2016. It is an alarming departure for a side who had apparently erased regular collapses from their resume. “The only thing I can say, it’s not a mitigating excuse at all, but that’s a young batting line up, obviously trying to find their way,” said Mickey Arthur, Pakistan’s coach.

The verdict Test matches in the UAE are known for speeding up on the last two days, but this was extreme. The first two innings of this Test took 11 sessions to complete. The remaining two were done in less than four. The nature of Pakistan’s capitulation at the end showed just how difficult the transition is going to be in the post Misbah-ul-Haq era.

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2.30pm: Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoun Emirates Breeders Society Challenge; Conditions (PA); Dh40,000; 1,600m
3pm: Handicap; Dh80,000; 1,800m
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Our legal advisor

Ahmad El Sayed is Senior Associate at Charles Russell Speechlys, a law firm headquartered in London with offices in the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Hong Kong.

Experience: Commercial litigator who has assisted clients with overseas judgments before UAE courts. His specialties are cases related to banking, real estate, shareholder disputes, company liquidations and criminal matters as well as employment related litigation. 

Education: Sagesse University, Beirut, Lebanon, in 2005.

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