Portugal's Urbanos appoints SHUAA as Middle East financial advisor
- United Arab Emirates: Thursday, December 20 - 2012 at 16:22
- PRESS RELEASE
Urbanos Group, the majority shareholder of Groundforce Portugal, one of Portugals' most successful businesses, announces today that it has appointed SHUAA Capital psc ('SHUAA') as Middle East financial advisor.
Urbanos, utilizing Groundforce Portugal's expertise, is keen to establish a hub in Dubai from which to build a regional business across GCC countries, Asia and Africa. As Middle East financial advisor, SHUAA will support Urbanos in a partnership arrangement helping the business set up and grow its presence. SHUAA will provide advisory services for business development and funding requirements. SHUAA will also act as the steppingstone for facilitating access to capital in the Middle East, enabling the future build-out of Groundforce Portugal's European and South American operations.
Urbanos and SHUAA signed a master services agreement at a ceremony held today at the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and in the presence of Portugal's Minister of State and Foreign Affairs, H.E. Paulo Portas. The agreement was signed by HH Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Al Maktoum, Executive Chairman of SHUAA Capital and Alfredo Casimiro, owner of Urbanos and Chairman of Groundforce Portugal.
H.E. Paulo Portas, Portugal's Minister of State and Foreign Affairs said during the signing at an event held at the Dubai Chamber that trade links between Portugal and the UAE have been growing steadily in recent years not just in bilateral trade but also because Portugal acts a very important hub for trade into Europe, the Middle East and Africa from South America, and Brazil in particular. He went on to say that the UAE represents a very exciting market for Portuguese businesses and this agreement demonstrates Portugal's intention of establishing an on-ground presence for his country's very best companies in the UAE.
Commenting on the agreement HH Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Al Maktoum, Executive Chairman of SHUAA Capital said: "Our specialist advisory capability, long track record in the region and deep network position SHUAA well to support the development of both foreign and domestic businesses in the country and across the GCC. We have long supported the development of the UAE by attracting capital flows and foreign direct investment and are very pleased to be working with Groundforce Portugal, one of Portugal's flagship businesses."
According to the UAE's Ministry of Foreign Trade the total value of trade between Portugal and the UAE in 2011 totalled over Dhs700m. Whilst much of this was Oil & Gas related the amount of non-oil trade grew nearly 300% to over Dhs60mn.
Concluding, Alfredo Casimiro, Chairman of Urbanos and Groundforce Portugal said: "We see a strong growth opportunity for our services in the GCC, and particularly in the UAE, which continues to be one of the fastest growing markets for air transportation, evidenced by the growth of the major Gulf carriers and the increasing numbers of passengers connecting through the region. SHUAA has the market knowledge and specialist advisory services which will ensure our business is properly structured and financed so that we can tender for contracts to support the growth of the region's transportation and logistics infrastructure."
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