United Arab Emirates

Arabtec Holding PJSC shares soared in Dubai after the company started talks to merge with Abu Dhabi-based Trojan Holding LLC, Bloomberg News reported. The stock advanced as much as 13%, the steepest intraday gain since July 2017, as Arabtec said the entities began a study to potentially combine their construction businesses and may merge after technical, financial and legal reviews. It didn’t provide further details. The talks come as a property-market slowdown weighs on companies in the United Arab Emirates.

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Aabar Investment’s bonds, worth 2 billion euros ($2.2 billion), have lost about a quarter of their value this week after an auditor of the Abu Dhabi company gave an “adverse opinion” on its 2018 financial statements, Reuters reported. Aabar was a subsidiary of International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC), which is now part of Abu Dhabi state fund Mubadala Investment Co.

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Creditors of Abu Dhabi-based Gulf Marine Services (GMS) are close to hiring an adviser to help them renegotiate debt terms, two sources familiar with the matter said, Reuters reported. London-listed GMS, which provides support vessels for offshore oil and gas and other energy installations, has been hurt by a downturn in the oil and gas services industry after a slump in oil prices in recent years reduced demand.

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The startling collapse of Abraaj Group, the once-mighty Middle Eastern private equity firm, continues to reverberate, Bloomberg News reported. Regulators in Dubai, where the dealmaker is based, have imposed a record fine, and Abraaj founder Arif Naqvi and a clutch of senior executives face legal charges in the U.S. The scandal, meanwhile, has all but frozen fundraising by other Dubai-based buyout companies. The Dubai Financial Services Authority fined two Abraaj Group companies a combined $315 million for deceiving investors and misappropriating funds.

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Dubai’s financial regulator fined Abraaj Group, the world’s biggest private equity insolvency to date, a record $315 million for deceiving investors and misappropriating their funds, Bloomberg News reported. The fines ordered by the Dubai Financial Services Authority come as Abraaj, once one of the world’s most influential emerging-market investors, faces legal action in the U.S.

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Amlak Finance PJSC is nearing a deal to restructure debt for a second time as the Dubai-based Islamic mortgage provider navigates an ongoing property slump, according to two people with knowledge of the plan, Bloomberg News reported. The company is asking creditors to reschedule repayments on $1.2 billion of loans over the originally agreed period that ends in 2026, said the people, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Most lenders have agreed to the new terms but a final deal hasn’t been signed, they said.

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Jet Airways shut down its operations on April 17 following the refusal by its lenders to advance any funds for its operations, The News Minute reported. Subsequently, State Bank of India filed an application with the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) to initiate insolvency proceedings against the airline company. News has now come in that Etihad Airways has expressed its interest in the resolution of the Jet Airways imbroglio.

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On May 30, 2019, Dubai’s ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, signed DIFC Insolvency Law, Law No. 1 of 2019 (the “New Insolvency Law”) into law, thereby repealing and replacing DIFC Law No. 3 of 2009, the National Law Review reported. The New Insolvency Law, and supporting regulations (the “Regulations”), became effective on June 13, 2019, and govern companies operating in the Dubai International Financial Centre (the “DIFC”).

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Gulf Pharmaceutical Industries is looking to hire a restructuring adviser after cutting jobs as a ban on the medicine maker’s exports to Saudi Arabia weighs on its finances, Bloomberg News reported. The company known as Julphar replaced most of its top management and appointed new board members as it comes under increasing financial strain. The United Arab Emirates-based firm also cut about 150 jobs, or 3% of its workforce, according to a person with knowledge of the plans who asked not to be identified because they are private.

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Limitless LLC asked banks to delay debt repayments for a third time as an on-going slump in property prices weighs on the Dubai-based developer, people with knowledge of the plan said, Bloomberg News reported. The company is seeking to reschedule about $600 million-worth of loans and is also asking banks for a new loan of 475 million dirhams ($129 million) to help complete existing projects, said the people, asking not to be identified because the information is private. The developer hasn’t proposed a formal restructuring plan to banks yet, they said.

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