ABC seeks to dispose of controlling interest in Hong Kong bank
Bahrain-based Arab Banking Corporation (ABC), the controlling shareholder of Hong Kong's International Bank of Asia (IBA), has announced that it is considering the possibility of disposing of its interests in IBA. Seeking a price of at least 1.5 times IBA's book value, ABC retains the right to withdraw its sale offer if bids do not meet its price target. So far only Singapore's OCBC Bank has reportedly expressed interest in acquiring a stake in IBA, reported the Apple Daily.
IBA is 55 percent held by ABC and 20 percent by financial services firm China Everbright, The remaining 25 percent is held by the public. Everbright has put its stake up for sale as well. IBA has less than one percent share of the loan market in Hong Kong, with total assets of $3.7 billion as of June-end 2002. IBA has an A-3 short term, BBB long term rating from Standard & Poor’s, and BBB+ domestic strength, BBB and A2 foreign currency ratings from Capital Intelligence. IBA is a banking corporation, providing financial services through a network of 36 offices.
Established in 1980, ABC, the parent company of the Arab Banking Group headquartered in Bahrain, recorded $55 million in net profits in the first three months of 2002, compared with a net profit of $103 million for the corresponding period last year. ABC’s original shareholders were Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, the Ministry of Finance of Kuwait and the Libyan Secretariat of Treasury (later the Central Bank of Libya). In 1990, ABC listed its shares on the Bahrain and Paris stock exchanges. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)