Hana Al Rostamani , FGB's Head of Strategy and Planning and Zulfiquar Ali Sulaiman, FGB's Chief Operating Officer, receiving award
Following a string of prestigious accolades throughout the year, First Gulf Bank (FGB), one of the major leading banks in the UAE, was named by the Banker Magazine, as the “2013 Bank of the Year - United Arab Emirates” at a glittering global awards ceremony which took place at the Intercontinental Hotel, Park Lane, London.
The award recognises FGB’s achievements in exceeding banking excellence standards on a global level. It also highlights the bank’s ability to deliver shareholders’ returns and meet their specific needs, maximising its strategic advantage.
The award honours FGB for its sustained, impressive financial results record while fulfilling the needs and requirements of the markets it operates within. The bank’s continued commitment to the local community through the development and implementation of products, services and initiatives specifically designed to meet its needs, alongside its international expansion strategy, provided further weight to its win.
Commenting on FGB’s award-win, André Sayegh, CEO of FGB, said: “We are delighted that our performance in the past year led us to the top. We continued to reshape and reposition our operations whilst delivering outstanding financial results. This is a very prestigious award, which highlights our achievements and commitment to our customers. It is not only a respected accolade which we are very proud of, but also a great incentive for us to remain the best in developing top-class services and products that benefit all of our customers. With this prestigious “Bank of the Year” Award, 2013 is a fantastic year for FGB and this title supports our commitment to meet our ambitious plans for 2014.”
He added: “Change is inevitable and we all need to adapt. This principle applies to the financial world in as much as to any other sector. It was our ability over the last year to adapt and create a new strong foundation for the future which supported us getting this award. We have already started implementing a number of important upgrades in all our businesses - refinements of existing products and services, development of new offerings alongside new international locations being set-up.”
Melissa Hancock, Middle East Editor of The Banker commented on FGB’s Award, “First Gulf Bank had an exceptionally strong year in 2012, recording a 12% increase in profitability to Dh4.2bn ($1.14bn), an 11% growth in its assets to Dh175bn and a 7% rise in its Tier 1 capital to Dh26.9bn.With 23 national banks and 28 foreign lenders, the United Arab Emirates’ banking sector is a highly competitive market and competition is intensifying. This makes the need for innovation all the more important.”
She added: “Today, FGB’s fundamentals are stronger than ever – the bank generated a net profit of Dh2.21bn during the first half of 2013, a 13% increase over the first half of 2012. This positions FGB as one of the most profitable and most efficient banks in the UAE.”
FGB has been honoured several times throughout 2013, winning awards including ‘Best Bank in the United Arab Emirates’ and ‘Best Bancassurance’ at the Banker Middle East Industry Awards 2013, in addition to being named ‘Best Local Bank in the United Arab Emirates’ for the second year running during EMEA Finance’s Annual Middle East Banking Awards. In recent months, FGB also scooped the title of ‘Company of the Year’ and André Sayegh was named ‘CEO of the Year’ at the Gulf Business Industry Awards 2013.