Majid Al Futtaim close to mandating banks for Mall of Oman financing

Mall of Oman is expected to open in 2020

Majid Al Futtaim, a Dubai-based holding company that owns and operates shopping malls in the Middle East and North Africa, has invited proposals from banks to finance construction of the Mall of Oman, a project estimated to cost about $700m, bankers said.

No banks have been appointed yet to lead the financing, but a mandate is expected to be awarded soon because the deadline for submission of proposals has already expired, they said.

A spokesman for Majid Al Futtaim said on Thursday he had no details to share at this point.

The request for proposals was sent to regional and Omani banks because the funding is likely to include a component in Omani riyals, said bankers.

Mall of Oman is expected to open in 2020, according to a Majid Al Futtaim statement. The retail, leisure and entertainment facility will have 137,000 square metres of retail space and 350 outlets, and include a 292-room hotel, it said.

Majid Al Futtaim said in May it plans to invest OMR515m (about $1.3bn) in Oman by 2020.

Read: Majid Al Futtaim plans $1.3bn investment in Oman malls

Its assets totalled $14.3bn at the end of the first half of 2016, according to a company presentation. Majid Al Futtaim is rated BBB by both Standard & Poor’s and Fitch