04 January 2017
ASMA Capital owned by sovereign institutions including Islamic Development Bank (IDB), Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) and Public Pension Agency (PPA), Ministry of Finance of Bahrain and Ministry of Finance of Brunei has signed a deal with Utico for a significant minority stake.
The deal with Utico for a stake in its water business is done through Asma Capital managed IDB Infrastructure Fund II, which has entered into a binding agreement with Utico.
The deal is valued overall at $ 147 million in equity and project finance and will be completed in the first quarter of 2017.
ASMA Capital is based in Bahrain and licensed by the Central Bank of Bahrain. The shareholders of ASMA Capital, who are also investors in the IDB Infrastructure Fund II, are sovereign institutions including Islamic Development Bank (IDB), Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) and Public Pension Agency (PPA), Ministry of Finance of Bahrain and Ministry of Finance of Brunei.
ASMA Capital stated that it seeks to invest further with Utico in its other projects and businesses.
Utico stated that the deal was carried out after intense multi-party due diligence and negotiations resulting in the deal signature in late 2016.
Ernst & Young, Hatch USA, ILFS, GU Advisory UAE, Latham and Watkins, Trowers and Hamlins and Taylor Wessing are advisers to the deal.
Utico is making significant investments in the UAE and expanding its infrastructure assets in water, power, transmission and distribution, storage, billing and collection.
Utico hopes to do more deals in the near future and propagate its model of development globally including Saudi Arabia and in over 80 countries, including IDB member countries. Its pro-consumer and pro-government development model will be attractive to many countries as successfully proven by Utico in the UAE.
Richard Menezes, Utico’s Managing Director stated that the wise leadership of the government of UAE has enabled Utico’s business model to develop and flourish resulting in this landmark investment. Its unique model of development has saved the governments billions of dirhams in capital expenditure and subsidies. The development model also improves the credit ratings of governments and government bodies with sustainable tariff systems.
Utico’s business model of enabling the governments to provide accessible potable water and power in the most economical and sustainable manner, promotes social and economic development without further burdening the governments or the consumer.
© Arab News 2017