Arabtec Says First-Quarter Profit Beats Estimates

May 9 (Bloomberg) -- Arabtec Holding Co., the biggest builder in the United Arab Emirates by market value, said first- quarter profit climbed, beating analysts’ estimates.

Net income surged to 84 million dirhams ($23 million) from 26.6 million dirhams a year earlier, the company said in a statement to the Dubai stock market today. The median estimate of four analysts was for a profit of 42 million dirhams, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The company’s board appointed Khadem Al Qubaisi as chairman and Chief Executive Officer Riad Kamal as vice chairman, according to a separate statement. Al Qubaisi is also the chairman of Abu Dhabi government-controlled Aabar Investments PJSC, which dropped a $1.74 billion offer for Arabtec two years ago. Aabar, through its units, holds 10.5 percent of Arabtec, the latest filings on the stock exchange show.

Construction companies in the U.A.E. are searching for work in other markets after $964 billion worth of projects had been halted or canceled in the country as of last November, Citigroup said in a Jan. 6 report. A group including Arabtec, TAV Insaat and Consolidated Contractors Co. is the preferred bidder for the construction of the new terminal building at Abu Dhabi airport estimated at $3 billion, Abu Dhabi airports said in a statement May 6.

Arabtec on April 23 said one of its units won contracts valued at 504 million dirhams in the U.A.E. and Qatar. A day earlier, the contractor was awarded a 222 million-dirham contract by a unit of Abu Dhabi’s Aabar.

The contractor’s shares lost 0.1 percent to 3.33 dirham in Dubai yesterday. The shares surged 120 percent so far this year, leaving the company with market value of 5.2 billion dirhams.

To contact the reporter on this story: Zainab Fattah in Dubai on zfattah@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Blackman at ablackman@bloomberg.net.

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