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|| Qatar investors bought 40% stake in Fairmont Raffles for $847 million

fairmont-kingdom.jpgSaudi's Kingdom Holding, run by billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, said Qatari Diar Real Estate paid $847 million for a 40% stake in Fairmont Raffles Holdings International - Zawya Dow Jones is reporting.

Kingdom Holding said Voyager Partners Ltd., a private investment entity based in the Cayman Islands, acquired the stake for a combination of cash and other consideration, while Qatari Diar's subsidiary QD Hotel & Property Investment Ltd. would steer management contracts to Fairmont Raffles.

Kingdom said its stake in Fairmont Raffles will be reduced to 35% from 58%. Colony Capital is the third largest shareholder in Fairmont Raffles.

Kingdom Holding is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code BFD84 and Qatari Diar is listed with the code BFD107.

More details from Zawya Dow Jones follows


RIYADH (Zawya Dow Jones) - Saudi's Kingdom Holding Co. (4280.SA), run by billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, said Monday Qatari Diar Real Estate Co. paid 3.2 billion Saudi riyals ($847 million) for a 40% stake in Fairmont Raffles Holdings International, a subsidiary of the prince's company.

The cash from the Qatari firm, a wholly-owned unit of the Qatar Investment Authority, the country's sovereign wealth fund, will be used to finance current and future projects of Fairmont Raffles, Kingdom Holding said in a statement on the Saudi bourse Web site.

Kingdom Holding shares last traded flat at SAR9.35 in a broadly unchanged market.

In an emailed statement, Kingdom Holding said Voyager Partners Ltd., a private investment entity based in the Cayman Islands, acquired the stake "for a combination of cash and other consideration," while Qatari Diar's subsidiary QD Hotel & Property Investment Ltd. would steer management contracts to Fairmont Raffles.

Prince Alwaleed said the investment "underlines the strength of FRHI's [Fairmont Raffles] brands and management capabilities and provides assurance that FRHI's growth on a global basis will be amongst the highest in the industry."

Kingdom said its stake in Fairmont Raffles will be reduced to 35% from 58%. Colony Capital is the third largest shareholder in Fairmont Raffles.

Prince Alwaleed, who owns 95% of Kingdom Holding, has kept a low profile after his U.S. stock picks plunged in the wake of the financial crisis and wiped out half of his conglomerate's equity. The company, which bounced back to profit last year after selling some hotels and land in Saudi, posted a SAR31 billion net loss in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Over the past few months the prince has regained his swagger, and has traveled around the world seeking investors and acquisitions.

Last month a Kingdom Holding unit offered $375 million to acquire the remaining shares of the Nasdaq Dubai-listed Kingdom Hotel Investments. And in February the prince sold a 9.1% stake in the entertainment firm Rotana Media Group to News Corp. (NWS) for $70 million.

Prince Alwaleed has become the Middle East's wealthiest businessman over the past two decades by focusing his investments on banks, hotels and media firms, building sizable stakes in companies like Citigroup, News Corp. (NWSA), Apple Inc. (AAPL), and Time Warner Inc (TWX).

News Corp. owns Dow Jones & Co., publisher of this newswire and The Wall Street Journal.

Kingdom Holding is expected to announce quarterly earnings later this month. The results will be the first financial disclosure after the firm reduced its capital to SAR37.1 billion from SAR63 billion earlier this year.



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