I am currently undertaking my Master’s degree at the University of Muscat, specializing in financial management. As a student, I have to go through various subjects and knowledge areas with a rigorous focus on finance in an academic and practical sense. One important requirement of the MSc program is to write a thesis in a specific area that focuses on the practical application of finance theory. The research in the thesis should be supplemented with empirical data from real-world business cases, preferably in the Omani market.
In cooperation with my academic advisor, I have chosen to write my thesis on “predicting default of construction companies”. I intend to focus on SMEs that availed program lending facility. Most of the research in this area is based on listed companies, and my advisor suggested that it would be a great contribution if I could use factual information from the bank (studying historical cases), and apply statistical analysis to develop models that could predict financial default before it happened. This research will provide valuable insights into the lending practices of the bank and can help reduce credit losses by (1) helping the bank in avoiding poor credits, and (2) provide early warning with existing clients so risk-mitigating actions can be taken.
Therefore, I ask your kind permission to use the information found in the loan applications, credit approvals and the audited financials to conduct financial modelling to test the hypothesis that I would research in my thesis. Of course, all the information will be strictly confidential (I am ready to sign a confidentiality agreement) and would be used for academic purposes only. The names of the client companies are also of interest in this research, so data can be anonymized before being made available to me. I would be more than happy to share the research results with the bank’s management.
I am looking forward to hearing your thoughts and I would be very grateful if you can also guide me, if you kindly agree to my proposal, in specific areas that you believe I should put more focus on in my thesis.
I also declare that I will fulfil all my duties and responsibilities at work fully and all my research will be done after-hours and on weekends.
Thank you for your kind understanding.
Afra Al Zadjalia