Abu Dhabi’s Waha Plans New Fund as Quarterly Profit Rises

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Waha Capital PJSC, the Abu Dhabi investor which co-founded the MENA Infrastructure Fund with HSBC Holdings Plc in 2007, is weighing a second such investment vehicle to profit from higher demand for building projects.

Waha, which holds a 17.9 percent limited partner stake in the fund, “is looking at the possibility of launching Fund II,” Chief Executive Officer Salem Rashid Al Noaimi said in a phone interview from Abu Dhabi Sunday. Its size “will be north” of the $300 million that the first fund raised, he said.

MENA Infrastructure Fund, which also has Fajr Capital as a co-sponsor, has invested in four projects including the Alexandria International Container Terminals in Egypt and Saudi Arabia’s Qurayyah Independent Power Project. The size of Waha’s investment in Fund II is still being considered, Al Noaimi said.

Waha is also in the final stages of receiving approval from the market regulator to invite institutions and wealthy individuals to invest in its regional-focused equity fund and global fixed-income fund, Al Noaimi said. Waha manages about 2 billion dirhams ($545 million) of its own money in both.

The equities fund has returned 40 percent since the beginning of 2014 until March, while the fixed-income fund delivered 55 percent since January 2012, Waha said Sunday.

“We have a great business that is doing well for us and we are opening it up for other investors to come alongside us,” Al Noaimi said. “We’ll be able to do some good fund raising.”

Waha earlier on Sunday reported a 20 percent rise in first-quarter profit to 182.2 million dirhams, as it benefited from its stake in aircraft leasing company AerCap Holdings NV.

The shares fell 1.9 percent to 2.55 dirhams at 2:55 p.m. Sunday. They have dropped 10 percent this year compared to a 1.5 percent rise in Abu Dhabi’s benchmark index.

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