This is the first time a school operator has gone in for a listing at DFM. Image Credit: Gulf News Archives

Dubai: Taaleem, the Dubai school operator, had a tough initiation on its first trading day, with the stock dipping 15 per cent to Dh2.55 from its opening price of Dh3.

Taaleem had come through strongly on its IPO, which also represented the first time a school operator was going in for a listing. There are other listed entities that have school campuses as part of their portfolio.

“Taaleem did see heavy trading, at 31.37 million shares and value of Dh86.89 million,” said an analyst. “We think the stock is going through a process of price discovery, which explains the drop in stock value.

“The company has delivered consistent results in the last 3 years. Investors will definitely see value there.”

Taaleem had sold shares at Dh3 dirhams apiece, raising $204 million. The company drew $3.7 billion in investor orders and priced the offering at the top of a marketed range.

Taaleem runs 26 schools across the country, offering British and American curricula as well as the International Baccalaureate.

Governments in the region, primarily Saudi Arabia and the UAE, have encouraged state-run companies and family-owned ones to go public amid high oil prices and strong investor appetite. The UAE is expecting more listings next year with several companies lined up, including Abu Dhabi National Oil Co.’s plan to sell a stake in its natural gas unit.

With inputs from Bloomberg