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Finablr to go public next month, to be listed on London bourse

Khaleej Times logo Khaleej Times 10/02/2019 Waheed Abbas
Finablr to go public next month, to be listed on London bourse © Provided by Khaleej Times Finablr to go public next month, to be listed on London bourse

UAE-based payments and foreign exchange firm Finablr, the parent company of UAE Exchange, will launch an initial public offering (IPO) next month, its founder and chairman said.

"The Finablr IPO will happen in March and it will be listed on the London bourse. However, we don't know the size of the IPO. We expect a very good response because we have a very good track record," B.R. Shetty said on the sidelines of a conference in Dubai.

He disclosed that JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs and HSBC are involved in managing the IPO, while the book-runners are reportedly local and international banks.

Finablr was created in April 2018 as a holding company of brands like UAE Exchange, Travelex and Xpress Money under its umbrella. The company had reportedly planned to sell 30 per cent of its shares to the public and use the funding for expansion and acquisitions. The holding firm has a presence across more than 160 countries and manages over $100 billion in volume for its clients.

Shetty also listed his healthcare firm NMC Health on the London Stock Exchange, raising Dh689.2 million (£117 million) in April 2012. Shetty is ranked among the richest Indians in the Gulf region, with a personal fortune of $4.2 billion in August 2018.

The Finablr founder was speaking on the sidelines of a forum about the Indian budget hosted by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India - Dubai Chapter. Shetty said that he will invest in the agriculture, healthcare and education sectors in India wherever an opportunity arises.

Replying to a question about investing in India's troubled Jet Airways, Shetty said that he has no plan to invest in the airline now.

"I don't plan to invest now. What I told Jet Airways was that they should collaborate with Etihad. They should divest some stake. But they didn't listen to me and now it is in trouble. They have not paid the salaries to pilots and staff," he told Khaleej Times.

In January, Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways and Jet Airways dismissed reports that the UAE airline had offered to buy more shares of the troubled Indian carrier in a $35 million instant bailout deal. 

Jet Airways, which is India's second-largest by market share, grounded its four aircraft over the weekend due to non-payment to lessors.

"The company is making all efforts to minimise disruption to its network due to the above and is proactively informing and re-accommodating its affected guests," it said in a statement sent to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

- waheedabbas@khaleejtimes.com

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