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RAK Ceramics may be up for sale

rak ceramics headquarters|By TAP Staff|The ruling family of Ras Al Khaimah  is exploring a sale of its shares in RAK Ceramics, the global leader in the manufacture of ceramic wall and floor tiles and sanitary ware, Reuters reported quoting a source familiar with the matter.

Talks on the possible sale have been going on for the past six months, the source told Reuters, declining to be named because the matter isn’t public. Dr Khater Massaad, who was the managing director of the group since its launch, had some time back left the company, which achieved great strides under his leadership.

“There are some interested regional and international buyers but they haven’t got the right price,” the source said. “The RAK government wants to focus more on real estate development and dilute non-core assets.”\

Members of the emirate’s ruling Al Qasimi family own at least 45 percent of Ras Al Khaimah Ceramics, according to Thomson Reuters data.

RAK Ceramics supplies products to over 160 countries and has been officially recognised as the world’s largest ceramics manufacturer with a global annual production output of 117 million square meters of ceramic and porcelain tiles, 4.5 million pieces of bathware and 20 million pieces of tableware

The source declined to give a value for the possible sale but said the ruling family wanted to sell a minimum of 25 percent of the company and conceivably all of its stake.

Ras Al Khaimah Ceramics has a market capitalization of $781 million, according to Thomson Reuters data. The company posted a consolidated net profit of 223 million dirhams ($60.8 million) in 2012, up 8.7 percent, on revenues of 3.17 billion dirhams, down 5.1 percent.

The Reuters report said attempts to contact a company spokesman late on Tuesday were unsuccessful. A Ras Al Khaimah government spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment.