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KIA considers selling Zain stake

Rumors circulate that it has asked investment firms to begin technical studies on Zain ahead of sale.

May 31, 2010 3:31 by

The Kuwait Investment Authority may sell its stake in the telecoms firm Zain, according

The KIA is the country’s soveriegn wealth fund, and it owns 24.6 percent of the firm, says the report. It quotes the daily paper al-Qabas, which itself cites unnamed sources. The KIA is said to have asked several investment firms to conduct studies on Zain group. The fund may then sell its stake through auction or to a strategic investor.

Maktoob points out that in October, KIA’s Managing Director Bader al-Saad said the fund might sell its Zain stake if the price is right, and that 2 dinars ($6.87) per share was a “good price.”

But Zain shares, halted on Sunday pending the distribution of its 2009 dividend, last traded at 1.34 dinars, says Maktoob.

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