Bahrain Wealth Fund Weighs Alba Listing in Saudi Arabia

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(Bloomberg) —

Bahrain’s sovereign wealth fund is considering a listing of Aluminium Bahrain BSC in Saudi Arabia more than a decade after its initial listing in Bahrain, people familiar with the matter said.

Mumtalakat, as the Bahrain fund is known, is working with Moelis & Co. as financial adviser on the potential listing, two of the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Alba, as the Bahraini metal producer is known, has kicked off the process to seek regulatory approvals in Saudi Arabia, the people said. 

The listing is expected by the end of the year or in early 2023, and is intended to increase liquidity in the stock, the people said. The plans are preliminary and could change, they added.

Mumtalakat, Alba and Moelis declined to comment.

Saudi Arabia’s stock market is one of the most active in the Middle East and since allowing foreigners to directly buy stocks in 2015 has attracted some of the biggest global investors. The Saudi exchange has been working for several years to attract listings from companies in the region as it tries to position itself as the main venue for stock trading in Middle East.

Alba raised $339 million in its 2010 listing. It had studied a potential Saudi listing in 2014 but put the plans on hold to focus on increasing production instead. 

Bahrain’s sovereign wealth fund Mumtalakat owns 69% of Alba, which accounts for about 12% of Bahrain’s GDP, according to the company website.

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