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Dubai Banking Group eyes Africa, Indonesia growth

Dubai, September 19, 2008

Dubai Banking Group, a unit of Dubai Group, said it is looking at opportunities in Indonesia and Africa as it looks to become the world's largest Islamic financial services company by 2015.

Dubai Banking Group chief executive officer Salaam al-Shaksy told reporters the group had obtained a license in Mauritius and was in talks to set up a joint venture in Nigeria, to tap into Africa's most populous country, and a partnership in Senegal.

The group, 30 per cent owned by Emaar Properties, is looking to make acquisitions in Indonesia, he said.

'We have picked a couple of possible targets in Indonesia and are negotiating with them. The banks are not listed and could be converted into sharia-compliant (Islamic) institutions,' he said.

Shaksy said Malaysia's Bank Islam, in which the Dubai Group holds a 40 percent stake, could post profits of $90 million to $100 million this year, compared to earnings of $76 million in 2007 and a loss of $400 million in 2006 before the stake was bought.

Bank Islam could increase its capital to $500 million or $1 billion, he added.

Dubai Group is part of Dubai Holding, a group of companies owned by the ruler of the wealthy Gulf Arab emirate.-Reuters

Tags: Africa | opportunities | Dubai Banking Group |

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