MENA witnesses $10.7 billion from 48 IPOs in 2023

The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region experienced a remarkable surge in initial public offerings (IPOs) in 2023, with a total of 48 listings raising an impressive $10.7 billion in proceeds. The IPO market in MENA demonstrated robust growth, with a significant focus on the energy and logistics sectors.

MENA witnesses $10.7 billion from 48 IPOs in 2023

Out of the 48 IPOs in 2023, five major listings, primarily in the energy and logistics sectors, played a pivotal role by contributing a substantial 58% to the overall IPO proceeds. These sectors showcased their strength and potential for investors. The final quarter of 2023 was particularly noteworthy, with 19 IPOs collectively amassing $4.9 billion in proceeds, as reported in the Ernst & Young’s EY MENA IPO Eye Q4 2023 Report.

ADES Holding Company emerged as the leader, contributing 25% of the total Q4 IPO proceeds, followed closely by Pure Health Holding PJSC, which accounted for 20% of the earnings. Notably, all Q4 IPO activities were concentrated in the GCC region, with Egypt being the sole non-GCC country to report IPOs throughout the year.

Looking ahead, the IPO landscape for 2024 is promising, with 29 companies from diverse sectors expressing their intentions to go public. Leading the way in expected IPO volumes are the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Egypt, outside the GCC, also has four IPOs in the pipeline, signaling continued growth in the region’s IPO market.

As many as 11 out of the 19 Q4 2023 IPOs recorded first-day gains in share price. Furthermore, the year 2024 is set to see a diverse range of sectors entering the IPO market, with Saudi Arabia and the UAE taking the lead in terms of expected IPO volumes. The MENA IPO market’s robust performance in 2023. Several reputable, large state-owned companies made their debut, including the Dubai Taxi Co and OQ Gas Networks.

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) had a strong showing in Q4 2023, welcoming three significant IPOs that collectively raised $1.8 billion. These included Pure Health Holding PJSC ($987 million), Investcorp Capital plc ($451 million), and Phoenix Group PLC ($371 million). Pure Health Holding PJSC stood out with an impressive first-day gain of 76%. Additionally, the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) saw a new listing in the transportation sector with the Dubai Taxi Company PJSC, valued at $315 million.

Saudi Arabia emerged as a frontrunner in MENA’s IPO landscape in Q4 2023, accounting for 14 out of the 19 listings. ADES Holding Company led with the highest proceeds, raising $1.2 billion, followed by SAL Saudi Logistics Services Company at $0.7 billion. These IPOs were listed on the Tadawul Main Market, while the remaining 12 IPOs, totaling $140 million, took place on the Nomu – Parallel Market, which also witnessed the region’s sole direct listing – Almujtama Alraida Medical Co.

The Muscat Stock Exchange (MSX) witnessed a historic IPO in Oman, with OQ Gas Networks SAOC raising an astounding $772 million. Meanwhile, the Oman Investment Authority (OIA), the country’s sovereign wealth fund, is gearing up to launch multiple IPOs and list state assets to fortify its capital markets. In Q4 2023, the United Arab Emirates hosted the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28), which ushered in significant developments in sustainable finance.

The Dubai Financial Market (DFM) introduced a pilot platform for trading carbon credits, empowering companies to manage their residual and unavoidable carbon emissions. Additionally, ADX launched the FTSE Russell ESG Screened Index, promoting transparent and tradable environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) benchmarks among ADX-listed companies.