BisB, Al Salam Bank in merger talks
Manama, August 9, 2011
Bahrain Islamic Bank (BisB) said it is in merger discussions with Bahrain-based Al Salam Bank Bahrain, a diversified Islamic banking and financial services enterprise.
If the corporate marriage goes ahead, the resultant financial institution would be the biggest Islamic bank in the country, according to BisB.
Based on publicly available information of the two banks, the merger would create an institution that would have total assets of BD1.7 billion ($4.5 billion) and shareholders' equity of BD337 million.
It would be the third largest domestic bank in terms of total assets and the second largest in terms of equity.
It will have significant underwriting capacity from synergy coming from the two banks' enhanced service delivery capabilities and be a stronger regional player in the Islamic banking industry.
It would also reflect on the extent of the development and pioneering role played by the Islamic banks in Bahrain.
The board of the two banks said that consolidation is the way forward for local banks in general and Islamic banks in particular in the aftermath of the financial crisis and economic downturn and greater competitive banking environment in the region.
BisB was the first Islamic bank established in Bahrain in 1979 engaged in retail and corporate banking.
Al Salam Bank-Bahrain is an Islamic bank established in 2006 also engaged in retail and corporate banking.
A spokesman for BisB said last night (August 8) that no executive was currently available for comment. – TradeArabia News Service