Published November 5th, 2006 - 12:50 GMT

Ithmaar Bank, a leading  publicly quoted investment bank based in Bahrain, announced today that its consolidated net profits for the first nine months of this year soared to US$161.7 million, compared to US$20 million of the same period last year.

This new record figures follows on from the Bank’s best-ever half-year performance, which saw profits reach US$33.2 million, and even surpassing by more than four times the excellent 2005 full-year profit of US$ 37.6 million.

Operating profit surged equally impressively to US$47.6 million at September-end 2006, an eight fold increase from US$5.9 million at the same time last year.

“We are delighted by the strong revenue growth, thanks to stellar performances from all areas of the Bank’s core business as well as our associates and subsidiaries,” said an Ithmaar Bank spokesperson.

Group’s total equity also increased significantly by 289%, from US$253 million at the beginning of the year to US$985 million at September-end 2006.
The company also showed a healthy 28% increase on the Net Asset Value per Share to US$2.11 at September-end 2006 against US$1.65 December-end 2005.

“These results have re-confirmed our successful business strategy for this year, having only accounted for six weeks of the consolidated profits from Shamil Bank and FBL on this quarter”.

Bank’s assets stand firmly at US$5 billion, including US$1.8 billion in investment accounts under management, again another strong increase from the 2005 year-end investment accounts figure which stood at US$1.4 billion.

Earlier this year, Ithmaar Bank was reconstituted as a public shareholding company, now listed on the Bahrain Stock Exchange. Through a private placement and an initial public offering (IPO), the Bank’s paid up capital was increased to its current US$360 million.

This was followed in August 2006 by the acquisition of a 60% shareholding in Shamil Bank, a leading commercial and investment bank based in Bahrain, listed on the Bahrain Stock Exchange (BSE).

The Bank then sold its 100% shareholding in the Islamic Investment Company of the Gulf (IICG) Bahamas to DMI Trust. The US$150 million sale transaction, netted a profit of US$104 million, which has been reflected in Ithmaar Bank’s third quarter consolidated profits.

More recently, the Bank also announced the launch of three major development projects, costing nearly US$2 billion. Work on the projects is scheduled to commence in 2007.

The projects include the US$800 million Al Jazair beach project, million, which will be implemented in partnership with the Economic Development Board (EDB). The project involves the creation of a world class leisure and family tourism facility for the public.

A US$1 billion Health Island aims to provide state-of-the-art health care facilities in a resort-type environment. The project will include specialist hospitals and hotels, which will be built using unique engineering architecture, with breathtaking landscaping.

The US$175 million Saray project, in the Seef District, will comprise towers, of which one will be a luxury family hotel, with a Middle Eastern theme, and the other an office tower.

“The Bank continues to aggressively explore investment opportunities across a broad spectrum of businesses and geographic areas,” said the spokesman.

“As a Bahrain-based institution, the Bank is committed to capitalizing on compelling opportunities in the Kingdom, while expanding its horizons in line with the Ithmaar’s new global outlook.

“We have a strong pipeline of high quality investments with significant potential lined up, which we will be announcing in weeks and months ahead.”


About Ithmaar Bank

Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. was incorporated in Bahrain in 1984 as Faysal Investment Bank of Bahrain, a wholly owned subsidiary of Shamil Bank of Bahrain. The Bank’s name was changed to Ithmaar Bank in 2003, following the sale of Shamil Bank’s shareholding to Dar Al-Maal Al-Islami Trust (DMI).

Ithmaar Bank, which has a paid-up capital of US$360 million, is a full service investment bank with operations spanning the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, as well as Asia and Europe. Besides holding significant investments in the banking and financial services sector in different markets, the main activities of the Bank include underwriting business (equity and debt), private equity (structuring, participation and portfolio management), project financing, and advisory business (capital market, mergers & acquisitions as well as project advisory).

Ithmaar Bank’s flagship companies include Solidarity, an Islamic insurance company based in Bahrain; Faisal Finance (Switzerland) and Faysal Bank Limited (Pakistan).

The Bank’s shares are listed on the Bahrain Stock Exchange. For more information on Ithmaar Bank, please visit the Bank’s website on




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