Muscat - Nama Holding has announced that it received as many as 25 bids from 23 international investors for the privatisation of its two subsidiaries Oman Electricity Transmission Co (OETC) and Muscat Electricity Distribution Co (MEDC).
The government-owned Nama Holding, the parent company of Nama Group, organised a press conference on Monday to announce the first round of the group’s privatisation efforts for its subsidiary companies.
Addressing the press conference, Eng Omar al Wahaibi, CEO of Nama Group said that they contacted over 90 international and local firms, which are either specialised in transmission and distribution business or are financial strategic investors, to promote investment opportunities in MEDC and OETC. “Out of these 90 companies approached by us, 23 firms have submitted 25 bids for purchasing stakes in OETC and MEDC,” he said.
The press conference illustrated the results of per-qualification phase of Nama Group’s privatisation programme, in which they declared the investors participating in the process for OETC and MEDC. Of the total 25 bids received by Nama Holding, 14 targeted for MEDC and 11 for OETC.
In October 2018, Nama Holding had announced the initiation of its privatisation programme, which includes sale of up to 49 per cent of its shares in OETC and up to 70 per cent of its shares in MEDC. Nama Holding also conducted roadshows and other activities in Europe, Asia and America for attracting investors.
Besides MEDC, Nama Group is also looking to divest similar 70 per cent stake in three other electricity distribution companies: Majan Electricity Co, Mazoon Electricity Co and Dhofar Power Co.
“Through privatisation, we are looking forward to attracting foreign direct investments, improving service efficiency, enhancing competitiveness, and deploying advanced technologies and best practices in the electricity sector. These strategies would enable the sector to improve customer service and enhance the competencies of the companies’ staff, and reduce the cost per unit of electricity supplied in the future,” Wahaibi said.
He further said, “Privatisation of electricity sector companies is considered one of the highest priorities of Nama Holding. Through this initiative, Nama Holding aims at enhancing the role of the electricity sector in the national economy and helping in strengthening its position in international markets.”
Mansoor Talib al Hinai, vice president - distribution and supply at Nama Group said, “We expect to complete the process of privatisation of these two companies (OETC and MEDC) by the end of this year. And the privatisation process of remaining three distribution companies will also be completed by mid 2020.”
Once the privatisation process is completed, Hinai said Nama Group will sell its 30 per cent shares in these electricity distribution companies through initial public offerings for listing them on the Muscat Securities Market.