DLA Piper advises on privatisation of Kuwait Stock Exchange

DLA Piper has been appointed by the Kuwait Capital Markets Authority (CMA) to help privatise the country’s stock exchange.

The firm won the mandate following a contested bid, which is said to have involved around three other international firms. DLA Piper’s Middle East regional managing partner Abdul Aziz Al-Yaqout, who is based in Kuwait, is running the deal with help from regional corporate head Murad Abida.

The state-owned Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) is one of the largest in the Middle East, with a market capitalisation of around $100bn.

A Capital Markets Law, which was introduced in 2010 and established the CMA as the stock exchange’s independent regulator, requires 50 per cent of the KSE to be floated in an IPO; the rest will be offered to companies on the exchange in an auction.

The deal will make the KSE only the second publicly traded stock market in the Middle East after the Dubai Financial Market.

Earlier this month the CMA was reported to have signed a six-month agreement with HSBC Holdings to help with the privatisation.