Huge Qatari retail complex raises $1 billion construction loan

Doha Festival City, a giant retail and hospitality complex being built by a consortium including UAE-based Al Futtaim Group, has raised a 3.7 billion riyals ($1 billion) loan to fund its construction, a statement said on Wednesday.

Doha Festival City, a giant retail and hospitality complex being built by a consortium including UAE-based Al Futtaim Group, has raised a 3.7 billion riyals ($1 billion) loan to fund its construction, a statement said on Wednesday.

The development will consist of 260,000 square metres of gross leasable retail space as well as hotels, a convention centre and leisure facilities and will house the first IKEA store in Qatar, the statement said.

The 10-year facility comprises of both a conventional loan and a sharia-compliant tranche. Last November, an executive at the UAE conglomerate had said the company was in the “final stages” of raising a $1 billion syndicated loan facility in Qatar.

Doha Festival City is being built by Bawabat Al Shamal Real Estate Company, a joint venture between Al-Futtaim Real Estate Services, Qatar Islamic Bank, Aqar Real Estate Development And Investment and a private Qatari investor.

QInvest acted as financial advisor and bookrunner to the transaction, with Commercial Bank of Qatar and unlisted Barwa Bank fulfilling mandated lead arranger roles.

Six other Qatari banks – Ahli Bank, Al Khalij Commercial Bank, Doha Bank, International Bank of Qatar,Qatar International Islamic Bank and Qatar National Bank – also joined the deal, the statement added.

The complex is due to be completed by 2015.

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