Emirates Takaful readies Austria-backed IPO


Emirates Takaful Insurance, which plans to sell shares to the public for the first time from March 23, will specialise in life and health insurance in partnership with Austria's Uniqa group , the majority shareholding company said on Thursday. The IPO will be the UAE's third this year.

"The new company will be unique because it will specialise in offering a wide range of Takaful life and health insurance that will comply with Islamic shariah law," said Nader Qaddumi, general manager of Al Buhaira National Insurance Company (Abnic).

"There will be strong support from Austria's Uniqa group which specialises in insurance," he told Reuters by phone.

Emirates Takaful will be listed on the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) after the IPO, he said.

National Bank of Abu Dhabi is acting as adviser and manager of the IPO.

Emirates Takaful, with Dh150 million of paid up capital, will sell the equivalent of 55 per cent of the company to UAE and Gulf Arab citizens.

Emirates Takaful is owned 20 per cent by Abnic, 15 per cent by Uniqa Group and 10 per cent by founder shareholders.

"Uniqa supports the venture with its broad knowhow in the areas of life and health insurance. In addition to its financial participation, Uniqa will delegate senior staff to assist in establishing the company during the next weeks," Konstantin Klien, CEO of Uniqa Group, said in a statement.

Due to the mandatory health insurance for expatriate workers in the UAE who account for 80 per cent of all workers, and the high growth potential in life insurance, the new company's prospects look "very good", Qaddumi said. (Reuters)

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