STC raises $966.35 million in Solutions IPO

22 September 2021 | Melanie Mingas

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Saudi Telecom Company (STC) has completed the initial public offering (IPO) of Arabian Internet and Communications Services Co, which trades as Solutions by STC.

Listing on the on the Main Market of the Saudi Exchange, Tadawul, the 20% share sale – approved by the regulator in June – raised US$966.35 million (SAR 3.624 billion)

The figure exceeded the revised target of $960 million, announced earlier in September, when pricing was confirmed.

Group CEO Omer Abdullah Alnomany has said via statement: "This announcement marks an important milestone in solutions by stc’s journey. Our consistent growth, strong profitability, operational expertise and market leading capabilities have allowed us to maintain our position as the leading digital enabler for Saudi Arabia.”

The possibility of an IPO for Solutions was first reported by Bloomberg in September of last year, with an initial completion timeline of late 2021. Those reports claimed STC was considering a 30% sale that could value the business at $2.7 billion. On the back of that news, STC Group shares temporarily gained 3.4%.

Following this, STC said it had appointed HSBC, Morgan Stanley and the investment banking arm of Saudi lender National Commercial Bank, to support the transaction.

On how the listing would impact the group's next financial results, STC has said in its market filing this week: "The financial impact of these proceeds would be reflected on the company's statement of financial position for the 3rd quarter of 2021 and there will be no impact on the profit or loss statement."

In the first half of 2021, STC as a group saw revenue increase by 9.49% compared to H1 2020, while gross profit for the same period increased by 2.25%.

Confirming the news at the time, Olayan Mohammed Alwetaid, stc group CEO, said the company had achieved "the highest quarterly and semi-annual revenues in its history, which is a direct result of the distinguished performance of all business units, and the group's subsidiaries, which reflected positively on the financial results".

It said it sees "growth opportunities in both the public and private sectors", including smart cities, the digitilisation of the healthcare system, cloud-first policies, and "the individual transformations of private sector companies across the Kingdom and the broader region".