India-based aviation firm plans IPO to fund Middle East expansion

IBS Software is targeting the Middle East for major expansion
Market analysts estimate IBS’ valuation in the range of $1.5 to $2 billion.
Market analysts estimate IBS’ valuation in the range of $1.5 to $2 billion.

IBS Software, India-based aviation software major, is planning to go for an international listing of the company by 2020-21, with a view to expanding its operations in the Middle East.

“Most probably we will go for a dual-listing, with US listing being for sure. We are still discussing the market advantages and country for the concurrent second listing plan,” V K Mathews, executive chairman of IBS Group, told Arabian Business in an exclusive interview.

Market analysts estimate IBS’ valuation in the range of $1.5 to $2 billion.

The proposed listing is part of IBS’ strategy to pursue an aggressive growth plan in various international markets including the Middle East, where it is currently expanding its operations.

Aside from the prospect of raising big money on the bourses to fund its organic and inorganic expansion plans, the listing could help catapult IBS to the big league globally, helping it in its business expansion plans in a big way, industry analysts said.

The listing will also provide an exit option to Blackstone, the leading private equity major, which currently holds 30 percent stake in IBS.

The remaining stake is with company chairman Mathews and his associates.

“IBS is a software product company, unlike many other Indian companies which are mainly software service providers, With several software product companies already listed in the US, the US investors will be able to gauge the valuation of our company much better,” Mathews said.

IBS has also struck a deal with Massachusetts-based Kronos Incorporated to acquire the latter’s Canada-based company AD OPT, a market leader in aviation software that provides crew management solutions to some of the biggest airlines across the world.

Emirates is among a number of leading international airlines which uses the frontline crew planning and optimisation platform of AD OPT currently.

Air Canada, EasyJet, Lion Air and Qantas are among the other airlines which uses the OPT platform.
The AD OPT acquisition will help IBS to get on a platter the former’s businesses in the Middle East and other regions.

IBS, which operates its businesses in the Middle East out of its Dubai office for the last 10 years, is set to open its second office in the region in Abu Dhabi next month.

Source: Arabian Business

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