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VIVA Kuwait says gets approval to list on KSE Telco’s bourse listing welcomed by analysts

DUBAI, Aug 31, (Agencies): VIVA Kuwait, the country’s number-two mobile operator by subscribers, has received regulatory approval to list on the local stock exchange nearly six years after it completed an initial public offering, the company said on Sunday. The Saudi Telecom Co affiliate made the announcement in a market filing, which did not say when it would join the bourse. VIVA Kuwait raised 25 million dinars ($87.9 million) from selling half its shares to Kuwaiti nationals in an IPO in September 2008, beginning services later that year.

In its 2013 annual report published in June, VIVA said it had applied to the Capital Market Authority (CMA) in April 2012 for approval to list on Kuwait’s bourse but was still awaiting a response. VIVA had a 33 percent share of Kuwait’s mobile subscribers at the end of June. Zain had 36 percent and Ooredoo subsidiary Wataniya had 31 percent, according to Zain’s earnings report. VIVA reported net profit of 24.3 million dinars for 2013, up from 3.87 million dinars a year earlier.

Meanwhile, the move will open the door for similar approvals as Kuwait plans to station itself as a regional commercial and investment hub through further development in these domains, they commonly viewed. The distribution of its shares among the Kuwaiti public also represents an important social factor, as many locals were looking forward to reaping the benefits of the progressing company, said Ali Al-Nemash. Moves like these should be encouraged as they are around the world, he said, expressing his support of the pressure that was being practiced for pre-conditions related to listing in the Kuwaiti market to be eased. 
 
This was a problem that was facing many companies that were hoping to enter the stock market, said Adnan Al-Dulaimi. The new CMA formation has made this all possible, he said, expressing optimism for the future amid the returning confidence in regulatory bodies in the country. Meanwhile, Mohammad Al-Tarrah viewed that the moves go hand-in-hand with development projects currently being pursued by the government. And if the move helps companies in being further productive then this reflects positively on the economy of the country as a whole, he added.

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