RIYADH (Agencies): Saudi Investment firm SEDCO has divested 15 percent of its stake in retail pharma chain Nahdi Medical Co. post listing on the Saudi stock exchange.
Back in 2003, SEDCO acquired 50 percent of Nahdi, which will now be lowered to 35 percent following the latest move.
Selling part of its shares in Nahdi marks the group’s first partial exit through a public offering, it said in a statement.
“SEDCO Holding has been a committed strategic partner with Nahdi for over 19 years and has played an invaluable role in us reaching this major milestone,” said Nahdi CEO, Yasser Joharji.
“It has fast-tracked our transformation into a leading retail pharmacy chain in Saudi Arabia and a fast-growing primary healthcare, omni-health platform,” he added.
Jeddah-based Nahdi made its stock market debut on Tuesday, with shares soaring 14.5 percent to SR150 ($40). A day later, it extended gains by almost 7 percent to SR160 at noon Saudi time, implying a market value as high as SR20.8 billion.
Meanwhile, there are no plans to impose fees on the roads in Riyadh at the present time, but they could be introduced in the future, according to Saleh Al-Jasser, the minister of transport.
According to Argam, Al-Jassar said a toll could be applied eventually to raise funds for maintenance on the roads.
The ministry has already commenced the “Saudi Road Code” project which aims to raise the quality of roads in the Kingdom. In addition, the first Riyadh metro lines are projected to launch towards the end of 2022 with the rest of the lines expected to be fully operational before the end 2023, he revealed.
In collaboration with the Public Investment Fund, the national transport strategy also entails plans for a new airport and a new national carrier in Riyadh, he added.
The responsibility for maintaining roads will be separated between the Ministry of Transport and the municipalities in the middle of this year.
Roads within the urban area will belong to the municipality while the roads outside the urban area will belong to the Ministry of Transport and Logistics, based on an agreement between both parties, the minister revealed.