Marka shareholders vote to liquidate the company

RetailME Bureau

Dubai-based retailer, Marka’s shareholders, voted to liquidate the company following attempts to restructure the business and reverse accumulated losses over consecutive years.

Investors approved the motion during the company’s annual general meeting on May 15, Marka’s chairman Khalid bin Kalban confirmed to the media.

Marka has not made a profit since listing on the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) in 2014. It began a restructuring process in 2017, including selling stores and cutting operational costs. In 2018, Marka announced that it was considering all available options for capital restructuring and was seeking a strategic partner to invest in the company.

However, its first-quarter losses for 2019 widened further, standing at AED295.8 million for the first three months compared to AED242.7 million in the previous year, according to a regulatory filing in May.

Marka’s fashion, sports and food retailers include Lebanese restaurant Reem Al Bawadi and Italian ice cream shop Morelli’s Gelato among its brands.

The company has suffered consecutive quarterly losses since its IPO in 2014. Marka’s share price plummeted by 90% in 2018, as a result of the firm’s failure to stem its losses. It had its shares suspended in April 2018 by the Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA), pending disclosure of its restructuring plan.

Marka’s current board was brought in to oversee the company’s restructuring efforts.

Marka, headquartered in Dubai, is the UAE’s first publicly traded retail operator focusing exclusively on the Fashion, Hospitality and Sports segments.