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|25 April, 2019

Dubai's Drake & Scull removes another CEO as it posts $1.2bln loss

CEO Tawfiq Abu Soud removed after three months and CFO Khaled Jarrar after just two months

General view of Dubai's cranes at a construction site in Dubai, UAE December 18, 2018. Image used for illustrative purpose.

General view of Dubai's cranes at a construction site in Dubai, UAE December 18, 2018. Image used for illustrative purpose.

REUTERS/Satish Kumar

Dubai-based contractor Drake & Scull has removed another CEO after just three months in the role.

The indebted contractor said in a statement to the Dubai Financial Market on Thursday that following a board of directors meeting on Wednesday, it had terminated the contract of CEO Tawfiq Abu Soud, who had only been appointed as chief executive in January.

Abu Soud's dismissal takes the number of CEOs to have left Drake & Scull to three in just 13 months - he replaced Yousef Al Mulla who lasted from August-December 2017, succeeding Dr Fadi Ferghali, who lasted from March 2017-August 2017.

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Drake & Scull's statement said that the services of group chief financial officer, Khaled Jarrar, had also been terminated. Jarrar had only lasted for three months in the Group CFO role, having been appointed in February this year.

The company said in its statement that it will be managed by an executive committee "which will consist of 3 executive managers till the appointment of a new GCEO and a new GCFO".

Drake & Scull also filed full-year accounts for 2018 showing a net loss attributable to shareholders climbing by 275 percent year-on-year to 4.5 billion dirhams (2017: 1.2 billion dirham loss).

Full-year revenue of 798 million dirhams was not only 70 percent lower than the 2.6 billion dirhams the company earned in 2017, but was also 23 percent lower than the 1.03 billion dirham figure the contractor had declared for the first nine months of 2018.

The company's balance sheet now shows that the company has net liabilities of 4.75 billion dirhams, after racking up accumulated losses of 4.9 billion dirhams in less than 18 months (a restructuring which took place in September 2017 saw the firm write off three quarters of its share capital in order to wipe clean earlier losses of 1.7 billion dirhams ahead of a 500 million dirham investment by shareholder Tabarak Investment).

An introductory board directors' report to the company's accounts stated that the loss increase was "mainly due to allowance against expected credit losses on certain receivable(s) and due from contract as cited in a previous audit report and impairment of goodwill and intangibles".

"Looking ahead, our main focus will be to restructure our debt and equity for which a comprehensive plan is in progress,” the directors’ note said.

(Writing by Michael Fahy; Editing by Mily Chakrabarty)

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© ZAWYA 2019

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