Bahrain to sell Gulf Air stake to private investors
Mumtalakat Holding CEO Talal al Zain stated the the company, the Bahrain Government's investment arm, plans to sell part of Gulf Air to private investors once the carrier returns to profitability, anticipated in three years (The National, 29-Oct-2010). The sale is part of a broader strategy to generate cash and diversify Mumtalakat's portfolio of investments. Gulf Air has been a drag on Mumtalakat and was responsible in large part for the losses it reported in 2009.
Mumtalakat Holding: "There's definitely a need to diversify and partially exiting or partially monetising some of our investments feeds into that. We own 100% of Gulf Air. There's no need for us to keep 100% ownership. How we do it depends on the timing and the interest. There is an IPO, there is inviting the private sector to take it through a private placement or it can be inviting a strategic partner to come in. There are several exits. After we break even, after we start generating profits - and that we expect in three years' time - we should be able to get to that stage," Talal al Zain, CEO. Source: The National, 29-Oct-2010.