GFH in talks over $100m Wakala loan
Manama, February 13, 2010
Gulf Finance House (GFH), a Bahrain-based Islamic investment bank, said it is in discussions with Liquidity Management Centre (LMC) syndicate regarding the tenor of its $100m Wakala facilities - due in 2010 ($50 million) and 2011 ($50 million).
This initiative continues the work of the management team at GFH to smooth out its liquidity profile to position it for growth.
The LMC has been mandated to assist GFH and is diligently working through the necessary discussions and processes to ensure a successful outcome, said a top official.
“GFH has proven to be resilient in tough market conditions. Our strengths are our innovative business model and the continued support we receive from our investors and partners. We thank the LMC syndicate for their confidence and support,” remarked GFH chairman Dr Esam Janahi.
GFH acting CEO Ted Pretty said, 'There are only four GCC-based Islamic banks in this syndicate who have always played an integral role in the Islamic Banking Industry and we appreciate their consideration to date.'
'They have joined a growing number of leading institutions who have signaled their conviction in GFH’s strategy to return to profitability and wealth creation. The LMC initiative precisely reflects the advice we have consistently given to the ratings agencies and market analysts regarding our capital management plans,' he observed.
He said GFH fully expected to receive more consistent support from the market and looked forward to its ratings appropriately reflecting the bank's achievements.
“Our priorities at GFH are now very simple, namely to grow revenue, substantially reduce our costs, continue improving our liquidity position (regaining our ratings position) and provide good exits for our investors from existing products,” Pretty noted.
“GFH is an important member of the Bahrain financial community and a leader in Islamic investment banking in the GCC. We are appreciative of the support received from the Central Bank of Bahrain on our new product initiatives and also their advice on strengthening our position as a key participant in the local market,” he added.
Ahmed Abbas, chief executive officer of LMC, lauded GFH for being a strong and valued player in the market and said it was pleased to lead this project. 'The continued successes of GFH in its capital management program demonstrate confidence in GFH, its Board and the management team.'
'We are in an era where ratings and rating agencies sometimes have not comprehensively and adequately reflected the true standing of entities specifically the positive outcomes of GFH’s strategy and capital management program,' he added.-TradeArabia News Service