EFG Hermes is expecting an increase in merger and acquisition activities as Egypt's economy is becoming more attractive after political and economic changes in the country.
Wael Ziada, the head of research at the investment bank, Monday on the sidelines of the one-on-one conference, currently taking place in Dubai, said as an example, the Egyptian economy has, since the start of this year, witnessed fierce competition between two food industries companies.
The conference brings together over 450 investors with top Middle East and North Africa (MENA)-listed companies.
As many as 27 initial public offerings were executed in the Arab world in 2014 at a total value of 11.5 billion dollars compared with 25 IPOs worth only three billion dollars the year before, Ziada said.
EFG Hermes has contributed to a number of big IPOs, including those of EMAAR Malls, Emirates Reit and Dubai Parks and Resorts in the UAE, Ziada said.
He added that EFG Hermes also executed the first IPO at the Egyptian Exchange late in 2010.
According to Ziada the drop in oil prices can very well decelerate activities of financial markets in Gulf states during the first half of 2015 after a tangible progress in 2014.
This means the financial surplus of those markets can be put into overseas investments, Ziada said, adding Egypt will have a big share of those investments.
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) is handling this drop from a position of strength, the head of research said. Dubai, for example, is a hub of trade and finance and its Expo 2020 will remain a major catalyst for increasing spending rates at the UAE public sector, Ziada cited.
Saudi Arabia is also moving ahead with its plan to open a capital market for foreign investors this year, he added.
But he still did not expect a huge flow of investments to the Saudi market until its credit rating at Morgan Stanley Emerging Markets Fund Inc. is upgraded, which is likely to take place in 2017.
Ziada, however, said that this will not make investment opportunities on the Saudi market less attractive.