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Aster gets approval to hold 100% of its shares

Waheed Abbas/Dubai
Filed on February 13, 2020

The company operates over 300 healthcare facilities, including hospitals, clinics and pharmacies, across nine countries.

Dubai - Aster DM Healthcare firm has become the first company in the UAE which can hold 100 per cent ownership in its Dubai subsidiaries after the UAE announced full ownership to foreigners in certain sectors.

"We wish to inform that the Company received approval of the UAE Government to hold 100 per cent legal ownership in the subsidiaries in Emirate of Dubai, which contributes majority of the GCC business," the healthcare provider said in a statement posted on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Expecting the transfer of ownership to be completed by the current financial year, the company ruled out impact on its cash flow.

Earlier, the UAE nationals were required to directly or indirectly hold at least 51 per cent stake in the share capital of the UAE company while the foreigners will control the remaining 49 per cent.

In July 2019, the UAE Cabinet approved 100 per cent foreign ownership in 13 sectors and across 122 economic activities. These sectors were renewable energy, space, manufacturing, hospitality and food services, information and communication. In addition, other sectors and activities approved for full foreign ownership were biotechnology, educational activities, healthcare, art and entertainment etc.

However, each emirate will determine the ownership percentage of foreign investors in these activities.

The company was founded by its chairman and managing director Dr. Azad Moopen, one of the richest non-resident Indians in the UAE. It operates over 300 healthcare facilities, including hospitals, clinics and pharmacies, across nine countries.

"Dubai is a significant market for us as it contributes almost 80% to our GCC business. I thank and appreciate the Visionary Rulers of UAE for this forward-looking change in law which will give impetus for more investments into the country," said Dr. Moopen.

"The expected date for completion of the transfer of 100 per cent legal ownership of the subsidiaries in the Emirates of Dubai is by the end of the current financial year. It is further clarified that this activity shall not result in any major cash outflow towards investment since the company is already holding majority beneficial ownership in t hose subsidiaries. The Company is in the process of obtaining similar approvals in other Emirates of UAE," the healthcare firm said in a statement posted on the Bombay Stock Exchange, where it is listed.


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