Saudi’s Arabian Centers sets the goal to support SME tenants

By Amirtha P S, Desk Reporter
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Arabian Centers Company
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Saudi Arabia’s mall operator Arabian Centers Company (ACC) has stepped into a mission to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) who are planning to obtain loans.

The company in its statement said that it has entered into an agreement with Riyadh-based Quara Finance Company, which specializes in Islamic financing, to support SMEs who run businesses in ACC centers. It is expected to benefit ACC’s tenants which are currently renting nearly half of the mall operator’s retail space.

In a stock exchange filing to the Tadawul, ACC stated that the credit facilities will be under the supervision of the Kafalah SME Loan Guarantee Program of Saudi Arabia, with a shorter credit review period and lower financing costs.

“The credit facility will reduce the level of receivables within the company’s balance sheet during the short and medium-term, through settling ACC’s dues by these SMEs,” the company said.

Further, the move will also support the occupancy rates within the company’s shopping centers, as the new agreement with Quara Finance Company will offer exclusive financing for the targeted SMEs, which occupy around 45 percent of ACC’s GLA (gross leasable area).

Arabian Centers Company

The kingdom’s lifestyle destination developer started in 2002 holds a portfolio of 21 shopping centers in 11 major cities of Saudi Arabia with over 4,300 retail stores. Its total GLA reached nearly 1.2 million square meters early last year, making it one of the largest players in the retail sector. The company went public in 2018 with an initial public offering of $746 million.

ACC operates some of the most iconic lifestyle centers, including Mall of Arabia, Mall of Dhahran, and Nakheel Mall, which was recognized at the Arab Luxury World Forum in 2017 as being consumers’ favorite shopping mall in Riyadh.