Aldar says $2.5bn assets sale was at book value

Moody's has cut Aldar's rating to Ba1 from Baa2 with a negative outlook. (EB FILE)

Aldar Properties said yesterday it made no profit on the sale of property assets to the government for Dh9.1 billion ($2.5bn) last year.

The emirate's largest developer by market value said in February it sold certain infrastructure and property assets at its developement off the coast of Abu Dhabi, including the Yas Marina Formula One racetrack, to the government.

"These assets were sold at book value and, therefore, there was no profit recorded in the company's financial statements," it said in a statement to Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange.

Aldar made its first ever loss in the fourth quarter, of Dh570 million. On Thursday, Moody's cut the developer's rating to Ba1 from Baa2 with a negative outlook, as part of a downgrade of seven Abu Dhabi-linked companies which it pinned on a lack of explicit state support. Earlier this month, Citigroup cut its price target for the developer to Dh7.7 from Dh8.6.

Aldar, which has a development portfolio worth over $70bn, has won key projects from the government in recent years, including the Yas Marina development and a forthcoming residential housing project for UAE nationals, according to Zawya Dow Jones.

Aldar Properties can continue to count on Abu Dhabi government support and will keep open its options on meeting its debt obligations, including asking for a government loan, Shafqat Malik, Chief Financial Officer, Aldar, told the newswire.

"There has been no change in our working relationship with the government over the last two years. It's been the same, or better," he added.


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