Qatar Insurance Weighs Bond Issue to Raise Capital Reserves: Sources

By Hadeel Al Sayegh and Tom Finn | November 17, 2016

Qatar Insurance Co. (QIC) plans a bond issue to boost its capital reserves, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Thursday.

It would be the first perpetual bond to be issued by the insurance sector in the Gulf.

Qatar’s largest insurer by market value has chosen HSBC and BNP Paribas to arrange a series of meetings with fixed income investors.

The offering is expected to be of benchmark size, which is traditionally understood to mean upwards of $500 million, said one of the sources.

The sources did not say when the meetings would take place, but said they are unlikely to be imminent given volatility in emerging market bonds in the wake of Donald Trump’s election victory in the United States last week.

A spokesman for QIC declined to comment.

Qatar Insurance has already raised its capital this year through a 20 percent rights issue worth 2.03 billion riyals ($558 million), which ran from April 10 to May 1.

Group Chief Executive Khalifa al-Subaey was quoted by local media in February as saying the additional capital from the rights issue would be used to support growth plans, including expansion in Southeast Asia.

As of the end of September, QIC’s total assets amounted to about $7 billion, according to its latest financial results.

($1 = 3.6411 Qatar riyals) (Additional reporting by Davide Barbuscia; editing by David French and Susan Fenton)

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