The QI Group has made history by securing two prestigious awards from Islamic Finance News: the Structured Finance Deal of the Year, and the Malaysia Deal of the Year 2023. These accolades mark the Group’s first recognition in the financial industry during its 26-year history.

The Islamic Finance News Awards are renowned for honouring excellence in the Islamic financial sector and are highly regarded by global Islamic capital markets. These awards aptly reflect the evolving landscape of Islamic finance.

In 2023, through the efforts of our investment arm, QI Capital, the Group successfully launched a RM100 million (US$20.91 million) Sukuk Ijarah Programme, with Bank Pembangunan Malaysia Berhad (BPMB) as the primary subscriber. The proceeds are earmarked for acquiring land and constructing a new 10-acre campus for our education venture, the Quest International University in the state of Perak, Malaysia.

This achievement is particularly significant in Malaysia, a country known for its high standards and innovative approaches in Islamic finance. The project involved one of the few single-asset securitisations in the Islamic finance markets, providing layered risk reduction protections.

The securitisation, supported by Silver Formula ABS, involved the unique single-asset of QI Tower through a sale and leaseback arrangement, resulting in the issuance of the Sukuk Ijarah Programme. This is one of the rare true securitisations in the global Islamic finance market and carries a strong social component, with the proceeds being used to construct a new university campus.

The awards were accepted on behalf of QI Group by Shekhar Balasubramaniam, CEO of QI Capital, and YK Lee, Group Chief Financial Officer, at a ceremony in Dubai, UAE. Additionally, Chandrasekhar Venkataraman, Senior Manager of QI Capital, joined them for the award ceremony in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Senior leadership from BPMB, including Mohamed Nazri Omar (Managing Director, Group Corporate & Investment Banking), Aidil Haznul Zulkifli (Group Head, Legal), Gerald Goh Yong Hwa (Group Head, Coverage), Wee Yee Tat (Group Head, Corporate Banking and Advisory), along with Wong Kok Keong (Head, Debt Capital Markets) from Public Investment Bank Berhad and the founders of NewParadigm Capital Markets Sdn Bhd, also received awards for their roles in this landmark deal.

The Sukuk Ijarah Programme underscores our unwavering commitment to growth and expansion, particularly in the development of our tertiary education sector. The new university campus will feature state-of-the-art facilities, providing an enhanced learning environment, offering affordable education, and nurturing future leaders.

Through QI Capital, QI Group has diversified investments across portfolio companies in Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, Hong Kong, New Zealand, the UK, and the USA, spanning sectors from financial services and education to telecommunications, Swiss watchmaking, natural food retail, hospitality management, and an online marketplace.

You can also view the Awards ceremony here