SME Stock – Deloitte advises education firm Al Faleh on its stock debut
Doha-based provider of education products and services Al Faleh is set to become the first ever company to be listed on the Qatar Stock Exchange’s Ventures Market – a listing that was advised on by IPO specialists from Deloitte.
240 million Al Faleh shares will be floated on the Qatar Stock Exchange (QSE) on April 13th – the first day of Ramadan 2021. The boutique developer of innovative learning is now entering “the next phase of growth and development,” according to Deloitte Middle East corporate finance advisory partner Robin Butteriss – who led the transaction.
Founder Sheikha Aisha bint Faleh Al-Thani’s goal is to help create a knowledge-based economy in Qatar through educational partnerships – a programme that already includes Doha Academy, Doha International Kindergarten and the University of Aberdeen. Al Faleh can now scale further – following a historical deal that marks the debut listing on QSE’s Venture Market (QVEM).
QSE CEO Rashid bin Ali Al Mansoori described QVEM as “a listing and trading venue for SME’s that do not fulfil listing requirement of the main market,” and “an alternative route to market for the SME’s who need the access to capital that being listed entails.”
Al Faleh has been cleared by QSE and the Qatar Financial Market Authority to break ground by trading shares on QVEM – with stock prices to be disclosed on the first day of trading. Pricing, trading, settlements and investor licenses are all identical to the QSE main market – although Al Faleh will benefit from the additional flexibility afforded to QVEM-listed companies.
“We are very pleased to have successfully led and managed a complex transaction process that resulted in the debut listing on QEVM,” noted Butteriss, who is based in Deloitte’s Dubai office.“The experience and capabilities of the Financial Advisory team in Qatar played a major role in supporting Al Faleh.”
An integral part of this team on the ground – working closely with Al Faleh and the QSE – was Deloitte partner Walid Slim, who lauded the potential of QVEM to drive economic growth. “The QEVM as a platform provides smaller companies opportunities to access capital markets and diversify sources of funding, which will support future activity,” said Slim.
QVEM joins QSE’s main markets, exchange traded funds, bonds and other indices – both to provide more diversified options for private investors and to enable entrepreneurship in line with Qatar Vision 2030 objectives.
This is the second ground-breaking deal supported by Deloitte Middle East advisors in recent weeks. Late in March, Butteriss and his team supported shipping company UACC with its sale to investment company United Overseas – the first ever reverse triangular merger to be completed under the Dubai International Financial Centre’s regulatory framework.