Al Noor shares fall on stake sale report

Al Noor Hospitals shares tumbled yesterday following a report that the private equity firm Ithmar Capital was seeking to sell its remaining 20 per cent stake in the operator.

The Dubai-based firm is selling its remaining stake in the hospitals group, according to a Global Capital magazine report.

The disposal could generate as much as £216 million (Dh1.16 billion) for Ithmar’s special purpose vehicle Astro II, the magazine said.


Al Noor Hospitals confirmed the sale of 20 per cent stake from Ithmar through an accelerated book-building process.

“The sale of these shares will add considerable liquidity to Al Noor stock, which will enable new investors to buy shares in the company,” said Sami Alom, the chief strategy officer at Al Noor Hospitals.

Al Noor shares lost 7.86 per cent to 914 pence in afternoon trade in London.

“The share price may come under pressure but there should be no operational impact otherwise,” said Asjad Yahya, an analyst at Shuaa Capital.

London-listed Al Noor reported an 18.3 per cent increase in underlying net profits to US$84.6 million last year. It has earmarked at least $60m this year for an expansion of its facilities and new equipment.

Astro II was among the founding shareholders of Al Noor, helping to float its IPO in 2013.

In September, it sold a 7.3 per cent stake in Noor Hospitals in a deal that was expected to net £87.5m for Ithmar Capital.

A few months later, it launched Amanat, a greenfield IPO aimed at education and healthcare markets, on the Dubai Financial Market, raising Dh1.3m.

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