Newsletter 100 Issue December (Copy 99)

View this email in your browser
Country Risk Update - Kuwait

Risk Indicator - DB4b
Risk Level - Moderate
Ratings Trend - Stable

Business opportunities should increase in Kuwait as the government targets a more diverse economy with its national development plan. Contract awards suggest that Divided Zone oil production will restart in 2019: this would tie in with the end of OPEC-led production cuts.
Market Overview
GCC sovereign financing set to drop to $300bn
The GCC sovereigns' financing needs are accumulating at a slower pace with a total of $300 billion between 2018 and 2021, the majority pertaining to Saudi Arabia, compared to $450 billion in 2015-2017, according to a report by financial analytics firm S&P Global. The drop is due to higher oil prices and government policy responses, with total funding requirements over 2015-2021 estimated to amount to $750 billion. The report expects a 70:30 financing split between debt and assets during the time period, with Bahrain financing almost entirely with debt, while Kuwait and Abu Dhabi relying on assets. It also forecasts the average GCC central government fiscal deficit to remain largely stable at 6% of GDP, while the average net asset position will drop from 130% of GDP in 2017 to 110% of GDP in 2021. On the other hand, apart from Oman and Bahrain, GCC governments continue to have an exceptionally high level of government liquid assets at their disposal. GCC sovereigns' combined central government deficit has also massively improved and is estimated to be around $75 billion in 2019 (5.5% of combined GDP), much below the 2016 nadir of $190 billion (16% of combined GDP). However, GCC governments' net debt positions have largely fallen since oil prices dropped in 2015. Debt-servicing costs now account for a much bigger proportion of fiscal revenue. According to S&P Global, the situation will only reverse in the event of a significant fiscal consolidation or a sharp rise in oil prices.
Flexible Offices To Make Up 5% Of Dubai’s Total Available Space By 2022
Dubai is leading the way in the trend of introducing flexible office spaces in the MENA region, according to global real estate consultancy JLL. This sector is set to continue to increase rapidly over the coming years. It currently accounts for less than 1% of total office stock, a figure that could increase to around 5% by 2022. A new report titled ‘Disruption or Distraction’ notes that the amount of flexible space in the 20 largest office markets grew by 30% in 2017 alone. With flexible space operators now targeting large established corporates, in addition to their traditional focus on freelancers and start-ups, this concept has the potential to disrupt the office market as we currently know it. Dubai stands out in the MENA region, with 55 projects offering around 70,000 sqm of flexible office space. However, this sector is still relatively small, accounting for less than 1% of the total office space in Dubai, compared to over 3% in key office markets across Europe. The major international operators include Regus, ServCorp and My office, that between them operating from 25 locations in Dubai supplying around 27,000 sqm of space. Dana Williamson, Head of Offices & Business Space, JLL MENA, commented, “Dubai is set to embark on the global trend of flexible office spaces, one of the biggest shifts in the real estate industry in the wider EMEA region.
FAB Partners With Al-Futtaim To Launch AI Analytics Portal For Merchants
The UAE’s largest bank First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) has launched a new analytics portal powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning tools, in partnership with the diversified privately held regional businesses Al-Futtaim. The new portal which is set to deliver advanced analytics to merchants has been piloted with Al-Futtaim, and will soon be rolling out to all key merchants. According to a statement from FAB, the merchant portal will use AI tools to provide spend momentum and revenue forecasting, customer segmentation, and analysis, along with launch campaigns based on key insights and to measure the effectiveness of these campaigns. The tools provide insights into potential loss analysis and customer loyalty analysis. It also gives clients the ability to measure and compare the performance of brands, products, stores and any other areas they might like to focus on for insights and allows comparing the performance of client’s brand with others, industry trends, and overall market performance. Furthermore, in the future, merchants will be able to access the data through the portal and will also have an option of API integration into their existing systems for data access.
Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Invests In UK Fiber Broadband Provider Hyperoptic
Abu Dhabi’s state-run investment firm Mubadala is injecting an undisclosed amount into UK-based fiber broadband provider Hyperoptic.  Following the deal, Mubadala, which has assets under management of $225 billion, will own a minority stake in the company and will place an observer on its board. The investment from Mubadala follows Hyperoptic’s $329 million debt raise earlier in 2018 and will help enable the company to accelerate the growth of its fiber broadband network in the UK. Founded in 2011, Hyperoptic plans to deploy up to about $658 million over the next three years as part of its efforts to reach 2 million homes by 2021. It originally planned to hit that target by 2022 but moved up its schedule by a year following its recent funding. The company already powers almost half a million homes and businesses in the UK. Mubadala is investing “substantial capital” into Hyperoptic, according to Mounir Barakat, who serves as executive director of Mubadala ICT.
Gulf Capital Sells Dubai Travel Firm Destinations Of The World For $173 Million
Abu Dhabi-based asset manager Gulf Capital has sold the travel company Destinations of the World (DOTW) to the Australian online travel agency Webjet for $173 million. The move by Webjet is designed to solidify the position of its global travel accommodations distribution platform, called
WebBeds. DOTW’s geographic focus, product range, and customers are highly complementary to WebBeds’ business, and the companies had worked together in the past, according to a press release. Webjet was drawn to the Dubai firm in part due to its position in the Asia Pacific market, which is also one of its strategic focus areas. Following the deal, DOTW will join a roster of brands under WebBeds including JacTravel, TotalStay, Sunhotels, Lots of Hotels and FIT Ruums. Currently, WebBeds reports it has access to an inventory of more than 250,000 hotels around the world, while DOTW works directly with roughly 12,300 hotels. Following the deal, WebBed’s network of directly contracted hotels will grow to 28,500. Under Gulf Capital’s ownership, DOTW nearly doubled in size, growing its total transaction value from $279 million in 2013 to an estimated $529 million in the 12 month period ending in June of this year, according to a press release from the companies. Following the sale of DOTW, Gulf Capital will retain a shareholding of an undisclosed size.
Commodity Tracker
Business Events this Week In UAE
ITU Plenipotentiary Conference
@ Hall 1, Dubai World Trade Centre
Date: 12 November 2018 To 16 November 2018
Business Updates
Dun & Bradstreet manages the world’s most valuable commercial database of 300 Million companies across 190 countries. Dun & Bradstreet has helped customers & partners build valuable relationships by uncovering the truth and meaning from Data. We apply statistical technologies & methodologies to build the highest performing predictors, which helps them connect with their most potential prospects & suppliers. Based on our extensive primary & secondary research, we are pleased to present our latest offering.
We would like to hear from you write to us at [email protected] for
Suggestions and Feedback


Our mailing address is:

Copyright © *|CURRENT_YEAR|* *|LIST:COMPANY|*, All rights reserved.

This email was sent to *|EMAIL|*
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
crif GULF DWC LLC operates snb logo in the U.A.E territory.