Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based investment bank with global reach and Global Investment House, headquartered in Kuwait, have mutually agreed to rebalance their stake in BBK as part of their continued strategic cooperation as major shareholders. Ithmaar Bank has announced that it has sold 20 million shares representing 2.47 per cent of BBK’s issued and paid up capital to Global Investment House at BD0.724 per share. Ithmaar Bank and Global Investment House will now hold 24.38% and 18.95% stake respectively in BBK.
Earlier this year, Ithmaar Bank acquired 19.1 per cent of the issued and paid up share capital of BBK, a leading Bahrain-based retail bank and Bahrain’s fifth largest bank by market value, after purchasing 147.6 million shares from the Commercial Bank of Kuwait (CBK), previously BBK’s largest shareholder. In May 2008, following initial acquisition, Ithmaar Bank increased its stake in BBK by 6.77 per cent by purchasing 54.9 million shares, further strengthening Ithmaar Bank’s holding in BBK to 26.4 per cent.
“This transaction is a clear testimony of the strategic cooperation amongst the major shareholders of BBK, with an aim to provide a solid foundation for BBK’s growth strategy and enhance value to all shareholders. With a 24.38 per cent stake, Ithmaar Bank is still BBK’s largest financial institutional shareholder and we are confident that our investment in one of Bahrain’s leading retail banks will help us consolidate our strengths across the Middle East and Asia Pacific regions,” said Khalid Abdulla-Janahi, Chairman, Ithmaar Bank. “Global Investment House strongly believes that strategic cooperation between the major shareholders will provide further impetus to BBK’s expansion and diversification plans. With a 18.95 per cent stake, Global Investment House will be BBK’s second largest financial institutional shareholder, and this investment, is in line with Global Investment House’s strategy based on geographic expansion into leading financial institutions,” said Mrs. Maha K. Al-Ghunaim, Chairperson and Managing Director, Global Investment House.
Bahrain- based Ithmaar Bank is listed on the Bahrain and Kuwait Stock Exchanges. Earlier this year Ithmaar Bank reported that its net profit for the first quarter of 2008 surged 91 per cent to a record $59.3 million. The Bank’s subsidiaries and associates span the Middle East, Asia Pacific, Europe and North Africa.