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Wednesday, 4 January 2023

A Qatari company wants the Ramses Hilton

Qatar has its eye on the Ramses Hilton: Qatar’s Al Kuwari Group has submitted an offer to acquire the Ramses Hilton hotel for USD 320 mn, Bloomberg Asharq reported yesterday, citing what it says are two sources close to the matter. The Arab International Company for Hotels and Tourism, which owns the hotel, is still negotiating with the Qatari group, one of the sources said.

REMEMBER- Qatar announced in March its plans to invest USD 5 bn in Egypt to shore up its finances, which have been rocked by the fallout from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Neither side has given much away about acquisition targets or time frames, but a report in October indicated that Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority, is in ongoing talks with Egyptian authorities to purchase as much as USD 2.5 bn worth of state-held stakes in companies including Vodafone Egypt. The fund reportedly also has its eye on a number of investments in Egypt’s ports, including at Safaga and Damietta.

Did Al Safy just take a majority stake in the owner? A report in the local press in November claimed that Egyptian conglomerate Al Safy Group purchased a 53% stake in the Arab International Company for Hotels and Tourism from several sovereign wealth funds in the Gulf. Enterprise was unable to reach a representative of the company for comment yesterday.

BACKGROUND- Our Gulf neighbors have pledged over USD 22 bn in total to support the economy amid the fallout from the crisis in Ukraine. Saudi sovereign wealth fund PIF and Abu Dhabi’s ADQ together invested USD 3.1 bn in government-owned shares in EGX-listed companies last year, and both countries have deposited USD 5 bn at the Central Bank of Egypt. Qatar has provided USD 4 bn in central bank deposits.

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