Summit Notebook

Exclusive outtakes from industry leaders

No bonds for Arabtec; not for now anyway

October 18, 2010

MIDEAST-SUMMIT/ARABTEC Just to be clear, Arabtec is not considering a convertible bond issue.

The builder has no need for funds and has adequate access to capital if needed. But nonetheless its chief financial officer Ziad Makhzoumi is watching the region’s increasing capital raising activities with interest.

“I don’t think we need any funding whatsoever… As a CFO I have to look at all the options all the time,” he told the Reuters Middle East Investment Summit in Dubai on Monday.

Convertible bonds are an attractive way to raise funds for listed companies, he said, highlighting Emaar Properties’ recent issuance plans.

Earlier this month, Emaar, the builder of the world’s tallest tower in Dubai, outlined plans for a $500 million convertible bond issue.

Makhzoumi said he saw more convertible bonds coming to the market, but there was no mention at all of Arabtec.

Arabtec has expansion plans which include a push into Central Asian states like Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, which could be funded from internal resources, he said.

“Any company needs working capital. Usually it’s in the form of equity or some form of borrowing. In our case our gearing is very, very low. Any process takes time, the decision has to be made first. And I don’t think we are at this stage to consider.”

So Arabtec is not considering a convertible bond issue. For now at least.

(Writing by Jason Benham in Dubai)

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