Dubai-based real estate developer DAMAC on Tuesday sold a three-year $400 million Islamic bond, or sukuk, amid a strong rebound in the emirate’s real estate sector.
The sukuk was priced at 7.75%, tighter than guidance of around 7.875% released earlier as order books hit over $1.15 billion, a bank document showed.
The issue followed a series of investor calls and meetings that kicked off last week for a benchmark-sized sale, according to a document from a mandated bank, usually understood to be at least $500 million.
However, the company had planned to raise $400 million from the sale, its management told Reuters in an email, with proceeds to be used to “fund land acquisitions, maintain debt in its capital structure, and also to continue long-standing relationships established with investors in [the] public sukuk space.”
DAMAC’s projects are targeted at the higher-end of the market as the company seeks to take advantage of a property boom post COVID-19 and Russia’s war in Ukraine which has fuelled an influx of Russian money driving demand higher.
Average residential prices in Dubai have increased by 12.8% in the year through March 2023, a recent report by real estate services and investment company CBRE showed.
Last year, DAMAC delisted from the Dubai stock market after requesting to do so in 2021 as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic weighed on profitability of real estate firms.
A flurry of Gulf debt issues this year has revived the regional debt capital markets, but while many sales have been sovereign, or state-linked, DAMAC was a test of appetite for a corporate debt issue in the private sector.
Investor demand for sukuk and sustainability-linked, or green, bonds has also spurred new issues.
Deutsche Bank, Emirates NBD Capital and J.P. Morgan were mandated global coordinators and bookrunners, and UAE lenders Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Dubai Islamic Bank and Mashreq also acted as joint bookrunners on the deal.