Dubai toll operator Salik announces dividends and growth plans

Salik is the company that operates Dubai’s electronic toll collection system on major roads and bridges. Recently, Salik announced its financial results for the second half of 2023 and provided an update on its business plans for the coming year. 

In the last six months of 2023, Salik saw revenues of AED 2.1 billion, which was slightly higher than the full year 2022 revenues. However, its profits were lower at just over AED 1 billion compared to AED 1.32 billion in 2022. Despite some fluctuations in financial numbers, Salik’s Chairman Mattar Al Tayer said the company continues to strengthen its position as a leading toll operator globally.

As a result of its H2 2023 performance, Salik will be paying out a total of AED 550 million in dividends to its shareholders. This works out to 7.33 fils per share. Al Tayer noted that the company is diversifying its revenue sources to supplement growth in the core toll collection business.

Looking ahead to 2024, Salik expects revenue-generating vehicle trips on its toll roads to increase by 4-6% compared to 2023. This would continue the strong growth momentum seen last year. Salik believes this level of traffic will support a robust profit margin of 65-66% for EBITDA. 

One way Salik plans to boost trips is by opening two new toll gates in Dubai by the end of 2024. This will expand its network from the current 8 gates to 10 gates across the emirate. In 2023, Salik saw record-high trips of over 461 million, surpassing pre-pandemic levels in 2019. The fourth quarter of 2023 set a new quarterly record as well.

The Al Maktoum Bridge gate in particular saw a large 53.6% increase in trips, which Salik attributed to the ongoing closure of the Floating Bridge diverting more traffic to that location. Trips were also up 12.2% at the Al Garhoud Bridge gate. Excluding these two gates, Salik reported growth of 7.9% in the fourth quarter and 9.3% for all of 2023.

Salik’s CEO Ibrahim Al Haddad said the company is committed to sustainable growth by strengthening its core toll collection operations and expanding its footprint in Dubai. It also recently partnered with Emaar to provide parking technology solutions at The Dubai Mall. 

Overall, Salik’s financial update indicates it had a solid end to 2023 and has ambitions for further growth through opening new toll points and diversifying revenue streams in the coming year. The toll operator’s dividends also provide a positive return to its shareholders.