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Listing family firms on bourse boosts capital value

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‘Move to create atmosphere for foreign investments’

KUWAIT CITY, March 31: The listing of family-owned businesses on Kuwait’s stock exchange, known as Boursa Kuwait, is unquestionably conducive to boosting the market’s capital value and creating a congenial atmosphere for roping in further local and foreign investments, according to economists. The move will undoubtedly draw more funds and experienced investors, thus positively reflecting on main indexes, economists said in separate statements to KUNA. They underlined the paramount significance of this step amid fluidity surges at the market, saying that it would pave the way for promising investments and offering more advantages to private companies, chiefly capital boost and stronger status. In this regard, Ali Alghanim and Sons Automotive Company has already asked for being listed on the Kuwaiti stock exchange to become the first family-owned business to take such a step.

Boursa Kuwait seeks to provide an appropriate climate for listing businesses involving family-owned ones by means of introducing a package of structural and technical reforms as per world criteria and standards. Commenting on the move, Chairman of the Al-Dorra Petroleum Services Company Waleed Al-Houti highly commended the bourse’s efforts to provide a set of financial products and derivatives in a bid to absorb the “big financial fluidity”. He voiced hope that further steps could be taken in this regard in order to put attractive options at the disposal of family and oil companies at the region’s second largest stock exchange. He spoke highly of the bourse-listing request of Ali Alghanim and Sons Automotive Company, which is a major family-owned business, as coming at a time when the market is seeing “big liquidity hikes ranging between KD 75 million (USD 255 million) and KD 80 million (USD 272 million). The company, he maintained, has long experience in the auto business so listing it on the stock exchange could be a watershed step that would undoubtedly create more investment destinations, given that auto industry has a promising future.

Al-Houti also called on other family- owned firms to follow suit so as to diversify and increase their business, thus promoting the Kuwaiti market at both regional and international levels. On his part, Al-Namash Group’s Chairman Ali Al-Namash said the registration of family-owned businesses with Boursa Kuwait would enable them to expand and grow at a higher pace.

With family-owned firms entering the market, investors will be able to diversify investment in listed firms, particularly family-owned ones, based on their long experience and weight, he said, expecting them to play a part in the promotion of stock-trading. Chairman of the Kuwaiti Traders Society Mohammad Al-Tarrah believed that family-owned businesses, once listed, would cement their status at the capital market, making it easy for them to obtain bank loans. He noted that family-owned businesses had done their utmost in an amazing way over the last decades in order to promote themselves at the market, thus winning great chances of success and competitiveness, (News report by Mohammad Kamal – KUNA)

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