Cityscape of Saudi capital Riyadh.
Harri Jarvelainen Photography | Moment | Getty Images
Shares of Lumi soared as much as 30% on Monday at the Saudi Arabian auto rental firm debuted on the Riyadh stock exchange in a 1.09 billion riyal ($290 million) initial public offering.
A unit of Saudi travel company Seera, Lumi listed 30% of its shares on the Saudi Tadawul exchange at an initial price of 66 riyals, at the top of their range. Prices shortly after rose to as high as 85.8 riyals per share.
According to its IPO prospectus, Lumi is the third-largest car rental provider in the Saudi kingdom, capturing an estimated local market share of 7% in 2021.
The company received more than $27 billion in bids from retail and institutional investors during its listing, according to Bloomberg, with the funds portion oversubscribed by nearly 95 times.
The IPO is part of a slow but positive start to listings in the region this year, compared to the bonanza of 2022.
In the first half of 2023, the Middle East and North Africa areas saw 23 public listings, which raised a cumulative $5.2 billion, according to an August regional report from EY. That marked a 60% decrease in funds raised year on year.
“Despite the lower levels of proceeds from MENA IPOs y-o-y, the region remains buoyant from an IPO standpoint,” EY wrote, adding, “UAE and Saudi Arabia continue to be the most active markets in the MENA region in terms of both the number and size of IPOs.”
For Saudi Arabia, its Vision 2030 drive to diversify its revenue sources and attract foreign investment — combined with a booming youth population and higher oil prices — bodes well for the future of its business environment.