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UPDATE 2-Saudi bourse converts into holding company ahead of IPO this year

* Receives proposals from 10 firms for advisory roles

* Immediate intention is to sell existing shares

* Sees healthy IPO pipeline including interest from Gulf companies (Adds detail on advisory roles, minimum float)

DUBAI, April 7 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia’s stock exchange has converted itself into a holding company and will be renamed Saudi Tadawul Group ahead of its initial public offering (IPO) this year, Group CEO Khalid al-Hussan said on Wednesday.

Tadawul has received proposals from 10 local and international firms on potential advisory roles for its upcoming IPO and a decision on role or roles will be announced in two weeks, al-Hussan said.

Saudi Tadawul Group will have four subsidiaries: Saudi Exchange, its stock exchange business unit, Securities Clearing Center Company (Muqassa), the Securities Depository Center Company (Edaa), and innovation unit Wamid.

Al-Hussan, who was chief executive at Tadawul, becomes group chief executive of Saudi Tadawul Group.

“I’m confident that the Saudi Tadawul Group and its subsidiary companies will shape what comes next in terms of capital market development in Saudi Arabia, serving as the bridge connecting global investors and regional economies,” al-Hussan said in the press release.

“The transformation provides a strong platform for the Saudi Tadawul Group’s IPO.”

Mohammed al-Rumaih becomes chief executive of the Saudi Exchange. Mohammed al-Nory has been appointed as chief of Wamid.

Reuters reported last week that the bourse invited international and local banks to pitch for roles in its highly-anticipated flotation.

Al-Hussan said the immediate intention was to sell existing shares of the company in the offering.

He said regulatory requirements were to float a minimum 30% stake, but some companies, which have listed on the bourse, have been allowed to sell below the minimum threshold.

The Saudi sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund, owns Tadawul, the Arab world’s largest stock exchange and among the top 10 bourses in the world.

Saudi Aramco listed on the bourse in late 2019, raising $29.4 billion in the world’s biggest IPO.

Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority (CMA) has received more than 30 applications for listings, al-Hussan said, adding Tadawul has a “strong and healthy pipeline” including potential IPO interest from the other Gulf countries. (Reporting by Hadeel al Sayegh and Saeed Azhar; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise and David Evans)

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