Alef Education: A Rocky Start on the Stock Market


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The UAE recently experienced a noteworthy event in its stock market with the listing of Alef Education, a prominent UAE-based edtech company that made its debut on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX). However, Alef’s first day of trading was far from smooth, as the stock experienced a significant drop in value within the first hour. Despite this initial sharp decline, the stock market debut for Alef Education turned into a rollercoaster ride, eventually showing signs of a gradual recovery.

Alef Education is a leading education technology company based in the UAE. It offers innovative AI-driven solutions and services to public and private schools both in the UAE and select international markets. The company’s mission is to enhance academic outcomes and bridge educational gaps worldwide.

The Stock Market Debut

Alef Education began its first trading day with high expectations. The stock’s listing price was set at Dh1.35, a figure that reflected the significant interest generated during the company’s IPO. However, within the first 45 minutes of trading, Alef Education’s stock price dropped by 17%, falling to Dh1.1. This immediate decline was a stark contrast to the optimistic outlook many investors had. 

Just over an hour into trading, Alef’s stock managed to reduce its losses slightly, narrowing the drop to 11% and trading at Dh1.19. This indicated some level of investor confidence despite the initial sell-off. As the trading session progressed, Alef Education’s stock continued to recover, cutting its losses further to just over 8% and trading at Dh1.24 by 1 PM. This recovery suggested that, while the initial reaction was negative, there was still underlying confidence in the company’s long-term potential.

IPO Success and Market Cap

Before its listing, Alef Education completed an oversubscribed IPO, raising an impressive Dh1.89 billion. The demand for its shares was exceptionally high, with subscriptions totaling over Dh74 billion—39 times the offering amount. This strong investor interest reflected confidence in Alef’s potential as a player in the UAE’s education sector.

Alef Education’s Business Model

Alef Education provides innovative solutions and services to both public and private schools in the UAE and select overseas markets. Its offerings aim to bridge educational gaps using cutting-edge AI technology. Investors saw the IPO as an opportunity to gain exposure to the high-potential education sector, alongside other service providers like Taaleem and Al Mal Capital REIT, which hold school properties in their portfolios.

Comparisons with Other Listings

Alef’s listing marked the third stock market debut in the UAE that year. Earlier, Parkin and Spinneys had also entered the market, enjoying positive first-day bounces in their stock prices. Despite the initial setback, Alef’s long-term prospects remained promising.

Chairman’s Statement

Abdulhamid Mohammed Saeed Alahmadi, Chairman of Alef Education, expressed pride in being the first edtech company to list in the UAE. He emphasized the role of education in societal and economic advancement and highlighted Alef’s commitment to improving academic outcomes worldwide.

Investor Sentiment and Analyst Views

Analysts noted that investors were still exploring new sectors, including education-focused listings. Alef’s track record, strong financials, and existing contracts with UAE schools contributed to investor confidence. Even Taaleem, another education-focused stock, faced a slow start initially but eventually gained momentum.

Dividend Plans

Alef Education plans to pay a minimum dividend of Dh135 million annually, starting this year and continuing through 2025. Based on the Dh1.35 listing price, this implies an annualized minimum dividend yield of 7.1%. Investors recognized the company’s growth potential and equity story, as highlighted by Mostafa Gad, Global Head of Investment Banking at EFG Hermes, the firm that advised Alef during the listing process.

Impact of the Stock Drop

Alef Education

The sudden drop in Alef’s stock price undoubtedly raised concerns. However, the company remains resilient, and its long-term vision remains intact. Investors will closely monitor how Alef Education navigates this challenging phase and whether it can regain momentum in the market.

Innovations and Growth

Alef is committed to continuing its innovation journey, developing AI-driven solutions that enhance educational outcomes. The company’s focus on bridging educational gaps and expanding into new markets positions it well for sustained growth.

Alef Education’s stock market debut was marked by an initial sharp decline, followed by a gradual recovery. While the first day’s performance was challenging, the company’s strong fundamentals and growth potential provide a positive long-term outlook. As the market becomes more familiar with education-focused listings, Alef Education is likely to gain investor confidence and continue its journey towards transforming the education sector.

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