01 November 2014
Further expanding its footprint in financial services in the GCC, Al Hail Holding
LLC ("Al Hail"), jointly with Global Development Group
("GDG"), has completed the acquisition of 100% of Habib Exchange Company LLC ("Habib Exchange" or the "Company"), one of the oldest and most established currency exchange and remittance companies in the UAE, with successful business operations spanning over 38 years.
Established in 1976, Habib Exchange currently operates through 11 branches located across Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah and Al Ain. Habib Exchange has a large network of 75 correspondent banks and financial institutions spread across 15 countries. The Company primarily focuses on providing currency exchange and remittance services to expatriate workers in the UAE. Additionally, with the introduction of Wage Protection System (WPS) in the UAE, Habib Exchange deployed a state of the art electronic infrastructure system to support the WPS program and its other operations.
Through the acquisition of Habib Exchange, Abu Dhabi based Al Hail continues to extend its presence in the financial services sector. Al Hail has made significant strides in developing and diversifying its portfolio and has emerged as one of the leading investment companies in the UAE with investments across healthcare, education, infrastructure, retail, real estate, financial services, communication, power & energy and technology. Al Hail intends to create synergies between the newly acquired Habib Exchange and its existing businesses.
On the other hand, Global Development Group is an establishment with operations in construction & design, facilities management, food & beverages, industrial machinery distribution, PRO services and human resource outsourcing services caters to major corporate and family-run businesses in the UAE.
The acquisition comes at a time when the UAE is experiencing a return of consumer confidence, recovery of the real estate market and more importantly an increase in the expatriate population in the country. Additionally, with the upcoming Expo 2020, the number of expatriate workers is set to significantly increase in the UAE. The expected increase in expatriate population together with promising economic prospects has created a pool of opportunity for exchange houses to provide remittance, monetary exchange and WPS services to retail and corporate clients.
Commenting on the announcement, Hamad Jassim Al Darwish, CEO of Al Hail and Chairman of GDG stated: "One of our key objectives is to improve the economy of the regions where we operate. The forthcoming Dubai Expo 2020, together with the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, highlights two key priority areas for the economic development in the UAE and as part of our strategic plans, we embrace the vision of addressing these priority areas of building a sustainable economy while ensuring a balanced social and regional economic development approach that will benefit and contribute to the ongoing development of UAE's economy. Additionally, we believe this acquisition will significantly contribute to the development of our financial services business and create synergies with the existing businesses of both Al Hail and Global Development Group. We are confident that with the support of Al Hail and GDG, Habib Exchange will develop into an even stronger business and add significant value to our portfolio."
Al Masah Capital Limited (Al Masah) acted as the lead advisor to Al Hail and GDG on the transaction. Al Masah is a MENA focused alternative investments asset manager with special focus on social infrastructure initiatives and promoting private equity investments in important sectors including healthcare and education.
Shailesh Dash, CEO and Founder of Al Masah Capital Limited commented: "We, at Al Masah, congratulate Al Hail and GDG for achieving yet another milestone towards building a strong, customer centric and ethics focused financial services business. Having successfully advised Al Hail on their second major acquisition this year, we are confident to further strengthen our relationship with Al Hail & GDG and work towards building a strong advisory business in the GCC."
© Press Release 2014