DOHA, Qatar — Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund sold a block of shares in Tiffany & Co. valued at as much as $417 million as the gas-rich nation’s standoff with neighbouring countries exceeds 100 days.
The Qatar Investment Authority sold 4.4 million shares in a block sale via Morgan Stanley, according to a statement provided to Bloomberg by the US bank on behalf of the holder. The fund will still hold a stake of 9.5 percent after the sale through subsidiary Qatar Holding USA LLC, according to the statement. The shares were offered at $94.4-$94.75, a person familiar with the process said.
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt severed diplomatic and transport links with Qatar on June 5, accusing the nation of supporting Sunni extremist groups and Iranian-backed militants. Qatar has repeatedly denied the charges. The dispute pits US allies against each other in a struggle over political dominance in a region that controls about a fifth of global oil supplies.
Qatar’s wealth fund has injected almost $40 billion, out of total reserves of $340 billion, to support its economy and financial system during the first two months of the crisis, according to Moody’s Investors Service. It also led to capital outflows from Qatari banks of about $30 billion in June and July, Moody’s said.
The fund in August reduced its direct shareholding in Credit Suisse Group AG to 4.94 percent in one of its rare sales of the Swiss bank’s stock, and last week sold almost all of a stake in Rosneft PJSC that it acquired in December.
By Matthew Martin and Drew Singer; editors: Stefania Bianchi, Shaji Mathew and Claudia Maedler.