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UK’s vacation ownership firm to go public in Pakistan

By Our Correspondent
January 12, 2021

KARACHI: A UK-based vacation ownership company has planned to go public in Pakistan’s capital market next year as it aims to become the first listed scrip from the country’s hospitality and fractional investment sector, its official said on Monday.

International Hospitality Investment Group (IHIG) Pakistan, a subsidiary of IHIG UK, planned to launch initial public offering (IPO) in 2022.

Headquartered London, IHIG is primarily involved in development and marketing of shared ownership properties at tourist spots in the country. Noorul Asif, chief executive officer of IHIG Pakistan, said IHIG has received a tremendous response for the fractional ownership program.

“An IPO will only add more credibility and transparency that will allow the concept to grow faster,” Asif said in a statement. “IHIG is now growing this unique concept of fractional ownership in Pakistani market at a fast pace. Families are getting aware about the product and are showing keen interest by becoming part of IHIG family to secure their future.”

The firm also plans to expand its portfolio along with increasing its business size. IHIG will spread out to Lahore and Islamabad. IHIG has brought the concept of fractional ownership to meet the new consumer demand for generating recurring passive income, and extended its investment portfolio in the property sector in Pakistan with its mall project offering. This project is marketed and managed by its fractional ownership division of IHIG.

Pakistan Stock Exchange saw four IPOs last year as companies raised Rs35.4 billion in 2020 via IPOs and right issues compared to Rs35.7 billion raised in 2019, according to Topline Research. The IPOs, including preference share listing, were from steel, meat processing, telecom, and chemical sectors.

The bourse witnessed four IPOs (including are preference share listing) during the year in spite of COVID-19 outbreak, where the cumulative amount raised clocked in at Rs8.4 billion. The number of equity IPOs this year are the highest in the last five years. In 2019, the bourse witnessed just one IPO of Rs5 billion.

“With improving outlook on stock market, many equity IPOs are in the pipeline. Seven companies, like Shell Petroleum have already announced right shares amounting to Rs16 billion,” Topline Research said in a report.

In 2020, 14 companies raised Rs27 billion through right shares with Fauji Fertilizer Bin Qasim fetching the highest amount of Rs5 billion, followed by Searle Pakistan Rs4.7 billion and Unity Foods Rs4.5 billion. In 2019, 17 companies raised Rs30 billion through right shares.