Al Khaliji, IBQ merger talks 'in final stages'
Doha, December 21, 2010
Qatari banking giants Al Khaliji and the International Bank of Qatar (IBQ) said they are in final stages of negotiations and due diligence, including formal discussions with key regulators on the proposed merger.
The discussions on the proposed merger began earlier this year, said a statement from Al Khaliji. The Doha-based Al Khaliji has QR20.58 billion ($5.65 billion) in total assets and QR 8.3 billion in customer deposits as of September 30.
IBQ is 30 per cent owned and managed by the National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), the largest bank in Kuwait and the highest rated in the Middle East.
An Integration Steering Committee (ISC) which brings together the combined expertise of both institutions has been formed to complete the process required for the proposed merger, it stated.
The committee which is made up of senior executives from both banks will guide and manage the proposed integration, and take decisions around the proposed combined entity in terms of strategy, integration approach and organizational structure.
The merger remains subject to approval from the relevant government and regulatory authorities in Qatar, as well as the Board and shareholders of both banks, it added.
Commenting on the merger, Al Khaliji chairman and managing director, Sheikh Hamad Bin Faisal Bin Thani Al-Thani, said the merger will beneficial to all stakeholders and the wider market including improved depth of product ranges and services for customers.
'Besides, it will offer the potential to realize higher profitability and value for shareholders, increased personal development opportunities for employees and greater competitiveness in the market place,' Al Thani observed.
George Nasra, the managing director of IBQ said, 'The combined entity of Al Khaliji and IBQ will provide multiple synergies, and be better positioned to capture growth opportunities and compete effectively through increased size and scale.'
'We firmly believe that this new entity will bring benefits to all of our stakeholders,' he added.-TradeArabia News Service