Saudi Leads Rise in M&A Deals

Saudi Arabia led the region’s M&A activity in July with two mega deals, followed by Jordan and Oman.



The value of deals targeting businesses in the Middle East rose in July, increasing four per cent from $2,081 million to $2,159 million, according to Zepher data – this figure represents the highest rise since March 2012, when $2,606 million was achieved.

The figure was also a substantial increase on the $178 million recorded in the year-ago period. Volume was down slightly, from 22 to 20 transactions, but was largely consistent with numbers seen so far this year.

Saudi Arabia accounted for 87 per cent of the region’s deal value with two transactions reaching $1,886 million in total. A rights issue by Mobile Telecommunications Company Saudi Arabia worth $1,691 million propelled the country to the top of the rankings by deal value in July. The share sale – which was oversubscribed by more than 100 per cent – involved a stake of around 60 per cent in the company.

The Kingdom also recorded the second-largest deal in the month, as retail group Fawaz Abdulaziz Alhokair agreed to buy Riyadh-based fashion clothing sales business Nesk Group of Trading Projects for $195 million.

While Jordan came second in the value rankings with $140 million of dealmaking, the nation recorded the most transactions across the whole region in July, with nine deals signed off, significantly more than the two announced the previous month. The figure was the highest since December 2011 when 17 deals were signed off.

Oman was third-highest by value at $126 million, a fall of 63 per cent on the previous month when $345 million was achieved, and the number of deals closed in the sultanate also dropped slightly from five to three, the same as Kuwait which recorded a disclosed deal value of $4 million.