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BMI Bank posts $32m Q4 loss

Manama, January 24, 2010

BMI Bank, the Bahraini associate of BankMuscat, the largest financial services provider in Oman, has registered a BD12.2 million ($32.3 million) loss after provisions during the fourth quarter of 2009.

Announcing its preliminary financial results for the year ended December 31, 2009, BMI Bank said its loan loss provisions owing to Saudi exposures had pushed its annual loss to BD16.8 million. The bank said it recorded a pre provision profit of BD4.5 million.

Following its initial announcement in June 2009 of exposures to certain troubled Saudi conglomerates and subsequent confirmation in October 2009 that the bank intended to prudently impair troubled assets, BMI has fully impaired these exposures and has conservatively provisioned the corporate book, the bank said in a statement.

'The preliminary results for the fourth quarter of 2009 is a profit pre provisions and one-off costs of BD 1.1 million, a profit pre provision of BD 0.6 million and a loss post provision of BD 12.2 million. The results for the year are a profit pre provision of BD 4.5 million and a loss post provision of BD16.8 million,' the bank said.

Commenting on the bank’s performance, Andrew Bainbridge, chief executive officer of BMI said, 'I am pleased with the very prudent provisioning we have raised on our corporate portfolio which allows us to move into 2010 with a stronger focus on continuing the growth and transformation of our business.'

'Our capital adequacy ratio is one of the strongest in the Kingdom at over 22 per cent, whilst our liquidity is excellent, our customer base has increased by over 25 per cent in 2009 and we continue to seek growth both organically and, where the opportunity arises, inorganically,' he added.

'2009 was a year of growth and consolidation for BMI. We reduced our cross border exposure during 2009 whilst growing within Bahrain. Our operating profit pre-provisions reflects better performance across our operations in Bahrain, Qatar and the Seychelles,' said Bainbridge.

He said the bank's offshore business in the Seychelles (BMI Offshore Bank) and international operations in Qatar turned profitable during the first half of the year while its Kenyan associate (Gulf African Bank) moved into profit during the last quarter of 2009 reflecting a diversified source of earnings for the bank in addition to a growing core business in Bahrain.

'Our business is well positioned for cautious yet steady growth in 2010. We will continue to work with BankMuscat to explore and deliver synergies from operating as part of a wider group. We will focus on our three core pillars of customer service, control and infrastructure to build a stronger customer-focused business.'

BMI said it will release the final results along with a complete set of financial statements after getting approval from the board of directors on February 7.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: loan | loss | exposure | BMI Bank | provision |

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