Amen Bank ratings announced
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the Foreign Currency ratings of Tunisia’s Amen Bank at BB- (Long-term) and B (Short-term) and the
Financial Strength rating at BB-. The Support rating was affirmed at 4. Due to Amen Bank’s improved
financial position with regard to asset quality, capital adequacy and profitability, the Outlook for its
Foreign Currency and Financial Strength ratings was raised to ‘Stable’ from ‘Negative’.
Amen Bank (Amen) was founded in 1971 as Crédit Foncier et Commercial de Tunisie. Private Tunisian
interests account for 99.76% of its ownership. Its principal shareholder is the reputable Ben Yedder
family, whose ownership of the Bank through several vehicles constitutes a controlling interest. It has
held its stake for many years. The Ben Yedder Group is involved in a wide range of business sectors in
Tunisia including manufacturing, trading, tourism, construction, insurance, leasing, factoring and health.
Amen Bank maintains a good position in the Tunisian banking sector, controlling around 9% of banking
sector assets. Over the last couple of years, Amen has improved its loan asset quality through a
reduction in the level of non-performing loans and an increase in the provisioning coverage. However,
more still needs to be done to improve both to more satisfactory levels.
A recent capital increase in late 2009 through a long-term subordinated issue has strengthened the
Bank’s capital adequacy position. The gap between bad loans and loan-loss provisions has narrowed
but needs to fall further. Amen Bank’s liquidity position is considered adequate, balancing a high
proportion of loans relative to total assets against a good base of customer deposits and a reasonable
level of liquid assets.
Amen Bank’s net profit performance to end June 2009 was good with stronger levels of net interest and
non-interest income. This improved performance in the first half of 2009 was achieved despite lower
growth in the Tunisian economy.
At end-June 2009, with total assets of USD2.7 billion, Amen Bank was Tunisia’s fifth-largest bank. It
operates a 112-branch network with staff of around 1,025.