x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Fourth-quarter surge for Saudi Arabia’s Kingdom Holding

Kingdom Holding, which owns stakes in Citigroup as well as Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation and Twitter, said in a regulatory disclosure that net income for the quarter ended December 31 stood at Dh226.4 million.

Profits at Saudi Arabia’s Kingdom Holding, which is controlled by the billionaire Prince Al Waleed bin Talal, rose more than 10 per cent in the fourth quarter amid a rise in the value of its assets

Kingdom, which owns stakes in Citigroup as well as Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation and Twitter, said in a regulatory disclosure that net income for the quarter ended December 31 stood at 231.2 million Saudi riyals (Dh226.4m), compared with 209.6m riyals a year earlier.

Profit for the full year increased 5 per cent to 742.5m riyals.

Calls and emails made by The National to Kingdom’s financial division were not returned yesterday. Kingdom’s former chief financial officer Shadi Sanbar, stepped down in November after eight years with the Riyadh-based company, Bloomberg reported.

The company has substantial stakes in the tourism sector, with holdings in the Four Seasons, Mövenpick and Fairmont Raffles hotel chains.

“Kingdom Holdings is a play on the global economic recovery, they have hotels all over the world, through various joint ventures,” said Saleem Khokhar, the head of equities at National Bank of Abu Dhabi. “With the recovery, it should be quite positive for them.”

A number of high-profile fund managers in the region do not invest in Kingdom Holding because of the limited size of its floated shares on the Saudi stock exchange. It listed 5 per cent of its shares on the exchange after an initial public offering in 2007.

Kingdom is planning to build a skyscraper that will outmatch the Burj Khalifa in Jeddah.

The company secured approval from shareholders in March 2012 to sell 3.75 billion riyals in debt inside Saudi Arabia or abroad.

halsayegh@thenational.ae