Ahli United Bank BSC (AUB), has completed the acquisition of a 40% stake in Al-Ahli Bank of Qatar through its latest capital increase. The deal will increase the Qatari bank’s equity from US$85 million to US $239 million, making it one of the largest banks in terms of capitalization and positioning it to benefit from the growth potential in Qatar.
AUB has subscribed to the entire 12,187,500 new share issue after the existing shareholders waived their pre-emptive rights. In addition to the purchase, Ahli United Bank has signed a ten-year (renewable) management agreement which will see AUB oversee the management and providing technical and marketing services to the bank.
The acquisition represents an important milestone in Ahli United Bank’s strategy to become a major regional bank in the Gulf by adding a significant presence in Qatar, a new and promising market, to its existing large operations in Bahrain, through Ahli United Bank Bahrain (wholly owned subsidiary) and in Kuwait through Bank of Kuwait & the Middle East (48% owned affiliate).
As part of the agreement, Al-Ahli Bank of Qatar Q.S.C. will be renamed Ahli Bank Q.S.C.
“The increase in capital will allow Ahli Bank Q.S.C.to significantly grow its retail, commercial, treasury and private banking businesses, and will improve the quality and depth of services provided to its clients” said Hamad Al-Marzouq, Deputy Chairman, Ahli United Bank.
Adel El-Labban, AUB Group Chief Executive Officer & Managing Director added “Ahli Bank Q.S.C. represents a major milestone in AUB’s expansion in the Gulf. It provides a very useful platform for developing a significant presence in one of the most promising markets in the region. Ahli Bank Q.S.C. will be integrated into AUB’s branch network as well as its service and marketing capabilities across the region and in the U.K.”
This investment represents AUB’s fourth corporate combination since 2000 beginning in 2001 with the acquisition of an initial 15% stake in Bank of Kuwait & the Middle East), a leading Kuwaiti domestic bank. This was followed in 2001 by Al-Ahli Commercial Bank’s acquisition of Commercial Bank of Bahrain (formerly Grindlays Bank, Bahrain) and renamed as Ahli United Bank (Bahrain) following full integration of operations.
Ahli United Bank has also established working alliances with Mellon Global Investments, a major mutual fund provider, and Henderson Global Investors, a specialist in international real estate fund management to service its institutional and high networth clients in the region. (menareport.com)
© 2004 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )