Asiya Investments Launches Advisory Services Arm



  • Expansion of the first GCC based investment firm focussed on Asia
  • Asiya to hold seminar on “The Arab Investor’s Route to Asia”

Asiya Investments (“Asiya”) today announced the launch of its Advisory firm in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), marking a considerable expansion of operations by the group. The Firm’s establishment in Dubai will soon be followed by the launch of Asiya Investments Hong Kong, acting as the new base for the group’s asset management activities.

Among the primary aims of the Firm is to address the imbalance in GCC investor portfolios between the 21st Century growth markets of Asia and traditional legacy markets. Despite low rates of growth, Arab capital invested overseas remains largely concentrated in Western markets. Conversely, in 2011, developing Asian economies (ex Japan) accounted for around 20% of world GDP in nominal terms. Supporting Asiya Investments’ drive is the emergence of a “New Silk Route”, an important East-East corridor. This resurgence has resulted in intensifying political and economic engagement and rapidly increasing levels of trade and investments on which Asiya aims to capitalize on behalf of it shareholders, clients and co-investors.

The business is being inaugurated alongside a seminar titled “The Arab Investor’s Route to Asia,” on 16 May 2012featuring a keynote address by Mr David Eldon, Chairman of HSBC Middle East and former Chairman of the HSBC Group, on the historic trade linkages and affinity between the Middle East and Asia, why they are regaining importance and the need for the right partner in order to effectively participate in the growing opportunities for trade and investment between the two regions.

The group is the first (and only) GCC based investment firm focussed entirely on investing in Asia as well as providing advisory services to cater to capital flows between the Middle East and Asia. In particular, Asiya Investments looks to build upon the increasing trade and financial flows between the GCC and the emerging Asian economies (ex Japan), which currently in 2012 account for nearly 50% of global growth in real terms.

The Firm more specifically concentrates on sectors that continue to grow as a result of rising domestic demand, driven by population growth and accelerated urbanization. Key sectors for the Firm include: Energy, Financial Services, Real Estate, Consumer Products and Infrastructure. Within these sectors, investments are undertaken through an in-house developed thematic approach. Investment ideas are generated by identifying patterns of growth across these sectors and economies in emerging Asia. It is this original approach that ultimately enables Asiya Investments to identify and capture profitable investment opportunities that are unique.

Asiya Investments Dubai is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Asiya Investments group, previously known as KCIC, the Kuwait-listed investment company founded in 2005 to invest in the Asian markets. The Asiya Investments brand has been established upon a strong platform provided by the group and its reputation and track record of expertly investing proprietary capital in the Asian markets over the past seven years.

With the launch of the Asiya Investments brand, or “Asiya”, investors are now invited to join the Firm as clients and co-investor in Asian investment opportunities. Asiya offers clients a range of asset management products including public and private equity, real estate and Sharia compliant strategies in which the Firm also invests its own capital. Additionally, Asiya provides Research and Advisory Services on Direct Investments, Acquisitions and Joint Ventures between Middle East and Asian companies in both regions.

Commenting on the announcement, Group Managing Director of Asiya Investments and Chairman of Asiya Investments Dubai, Mr. Ahmad Al-Hamad, said: “We are delighted to announce the launch of Asiya Investments, the new brand under which each of our companies will now operate. The group’s transition into a client focussed business marks the third phase of our growth following our establishment with $300 million dollars of capital and subsequent expansion from a focus on China to investing across the developing Asian countries. In what has been the most difficult five years in the global markets, including those in Asia, we have proven our sustainability and ability to navigate the most treacherous market conditions.”

Mr. Al-Hamad went on to say: “This is why we have chosen 2012, our 7th year of operations, to open our doors to a wider audience of investors. Co-investors are now not only able to invest in our funds and companies, but can also benefit from our advisory and research resources and expertise. We are unique in being the only home grown investment firm in the Middle East focused solely on the Asian markets. With strong teams on the ground in Asia and the GCC, we are well positioned to offer local investors an unmatched level of understanding, trust and alignment in addition to proprietary deal flow and world-class products, which we develop and underwrite.”

Mr. Abdulla Mohammed Al Awar, CEO of DIFC Authority, said: "We are pleased to welcome Asiya Investments to our community of financial and professional services firms. DIFC is not just a cornerstone of the Dubai and UAE economies, but is also the centre for attracting investment, supporting economic growth across the region, and enabling global capital flow. Asiya has a strong proposition to regional investors and their decision to establish their regional base in DIFC will provide them with the ideal platform and modern infrastructure they need to facilitate the capital flows into and out of targeted Asian markets."

Mr. Mohab Mufti, CEO of Asiya Investments Dubai, added: “We are delighted to launch our GCC based Advisory firm within the DIFC, which is itself increasingly acting as a focal point for trade flows between the Middle East and Asia. From here we will be able to utilise the Firm’s deep market insight and strong and privileged relationships in Asia to the benefit of our partners and clients here in the Middle East region. Our target audience will include sovereign funds, regional financial institutions and family investment offices. What these investors will share is a desire to further diversify their foreign investments and benefit from the Eastern growth phenomena. We firmly believe that this is the Asian Century and that Arab investors, who today have more than 85% of their foreign portfolios allocated to mature markets, must rebalance in line with an economic power shift to the East, which will only become more pronounced in the years and decades ahead.”
Asiya Investments Dubai Ltd is licensed and regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority.

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