Anghami issued with Nasdaq warning over share price

Anghami's Elie Habib, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer and Eddy Maroun, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer ring the NASDAQ’s opening bell at Anghami's stock market debut, Feb. 4, 2022.

Music streaming service Anghami made history in 2022 when it became the first Arab tech company to list on the Nasdaq. Now, that historic listing is at risk.

According to a filing with the SEC, the Abu Dhabi-headquartered company has received a notification from the Nasdaq exchange that it is in violation of Nasdaq listing rules – because its stock price is too low.

Nasdaq rules require listed businesses to maintain a minimum share price of USD $1. If the price falls below that level for 30 consecutive days, the exchange can launch a review of the listed company that can result in delisting.

Under those rules, Anghami has 180 days to regain compliance. If its share price closes above $1 for 10 consecutive days during that period, the Nasdaq will consider the matter closed, Anghami said in its filing to the SEC.

“Should the situation not resolve itself during the 180 calendar day compliance period, the company intends to consider available options to cure the deficiency and regain compliance with the minimum bid requirement within the compliance period, including by potentially approving a reverse share split,” Anghami said in the filing, adding that maintaining its Nasdaq listing is a “key priority” for the company.

The development highlights a long market decline for Anghami, which listed on the Nasdaq in February 2022 after completing a SPAC merger with Vistas Media Acquisition Company (VMAC) that valued Anghami at $220 million.

The newly public company’s share price spiked as much as 82% on its first day of trading, to within a hair of $18 per share, before beginning a prolonged decline that resulted in its share price falling below $1 in mid-August. At the time of writing on Monday (October 16), Anghami shares were trading at $0.85 (see below).

Based on its current share price, Anghami’s market capitalization is now around $22.2 million, or about a tenth of its valuation at the time of the SPAC merger.

Launched in 2012, Anghami has built itself into what it calls the “first, most established and fastest growing music technology platform in the Middle East and North Africa region,” with 120 million registered users and – as of the time of the company’s full-year 2022 report1.52 million paying subscribers.

“The Company intends to consider available options to cure the deficiency and regain compliance with the minimum bid requirement within the compliance period, including by potentially approving a reverse share split.”


The company boasts the largest digital music catalog in the MENA region, with 100 million songs and other items of licensed content, and operates in 16 MENA countries from offices in Abu Dhabi, Beirut, Dubai, Cairo and Riyadh.

In its 2022 earnings release, the company reported a 35.6% YoY increase in revenue, to a total of $48.1 million. Total paying subscribers grew by 21% YoY.

Its Q1 2023 earnings showed its gross profit margin growing to 23%, from 17% in the same quarter a year earlier. That translated into a $3.1-million (or 60%) YoY improvement in EBITDA.

However, Anghami has also been engaged in cost-cutting measures, announcing in November 2022 that it had reduced headcount by 22%. Given the company’s employee count of 174 at the end of 2021, that implied somewhere around 40 redundancies.

The company also announced that it had reduced its cloud computing costs by 19%.

“Given the impact of challenging macroeconomic conditions, we had to take some cost disciplinary measures to improve our bottom-line performance,” Anghami CEO and Co-Founder Eddy Maroun said at the time.

Reports swirled around this time that Anghami’s larger rival, Spotify, was looking to acquire the company. One news source alleged that Anghami’s stock market debut via a SPAC merger was meant to accelerate the process of a Spotify buyout.

While the Spotify acquisition never materialized, Anghami did get a $5-million boost from an investment by SRMG Ventures, the venture capital arm of Saudi Research and Media Group (SRMG), which calls itself the “largest integrated media group in MENA.”

The investment will allow Anghami to “leverage SRMG’s extensive media network to accelerate its growth by creating new experiences for users and opportunities for artists, and collaborating to expand the legal consumption of music and audio content in the MENA region,” the streaming service said.Music Business Worldwide

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