News | Wednesday, 02 December 2009

IHI not expecting changes to its Dubai shareholding

Karl Stagno-Navarra

International Hotel Investments (IHI) plc is not expecting any imminent changes to its shareholding structure through the shareholding belonging to Istithmar of Dubai
Informed sources have explained that since Dubai World revealed that it was in “constructive” talks with creditors about restructuring US$26 billion of its debt pile, which could include the sale of assets, there has been no indication that the €178 million shareholding of Istithmar - in IHI could be sold.
Dubai World said that the restructuring was limited to certain subsidiaries, including Nakheel, the troubled property developer, whose US$4 billion Islamic bond due for repayment on December 14 triggered the current crisis, and Limitless World.
However, IHI sources have told BusinessToday that as it appears from the company statements, Nakheel have directly invested the money and the hotels are physical assets and are fully operational. While there could be talk of a possible shareholding sale of shares or assets to neighbouring Qatar and Abu Dhabi, IHI sources said that the situation is still “fluid,” however it is quite unlikely that changes to the IHI shareholding structure are made.
The recently acquired Metropole building in London, currently undergoing a multi-million refurbishment programme is not a Nakheel Hotels investment but an IHI-Lafico project.
“The Metropole project is going ahead according to schedule and the Dubai issue has absolutely nothing to do with it,” said an IHI source.
International Hotel Investments Plc (IHI) was launched as a publicly-traded company in 2000 by Corinthia Palace Hotel Company Limited of Malta, with the intention to acquire, develop and operate upscale hotels and ancillary real estate in Europe and beyond, principally in fast-evolving destinations. Nakheel Hotels have been shareholders in IHI since 2007.



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02 December 2009


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