Warba Bank signed a Sale and Purchase Agreement with Ahli United Bank B.S.C and its subsidiary (Ahli United Bank K.S.C.P.), to acquire their respective shareholding in Kuwait and Middle East Financial Investment Company (KMEFIC), representing 75.72% of the Company's outstanding shares, subject to securing all regulatory approvals. The deal was signed in the presence of Mr. Shaheen Hamad Al Ghanem, Warba Bank’s Chief Executive Officer and Mr. Tareq Muhmood, acting Chief Executive Officer of Ahli United Bank (Kuwait).
Commenting on the deal, Mr. Al Ghanem said: "Praise be to Allah, the achievement of the Investment Banking Group at Warba Bank through the acquisition of Ahli United Bank Group’s share in KMEFIC stems from our strategic growth initiative which calls for the establishment of an asset and wealth management platform that positions the bank to provide an integrated financial product offering to its retail and institutional customers, whilst concurrently accelerating our strategic objectives by acquiring a leading firm in the asset management and financial services field”.
He elaborated: “This deal debuts our investment activities in 2019 following the capital increase last year, which resulted in strengthening the Bank’s capital base reaching KD 285 million by the end of 2018. The share capital increase of 50% was fully covered by the Bank’s shareholders oversubscribing to all shares offered for a total amount of KD 90 million"
Al-Ghanem explained that the capital increase establishes a solid base to grow the Bank’s investments in the upcoming period in vital economic sectors, as well as for financing mega national and regional projects that will secure steady and lucrative returns for both shareholders and customers.
Al-Ghanem added; “the capital increase is also a key factor in strengthening the Bank's operations and expansion in the corporate sector, which would solidify its leading position in the banking industry; this will be achieved by providing financing facilities for local companies and projects across economic sectors including: oil and gas, education, construction and contracting; as well as participating in syndicated financing deals with other banks. In the next two years, the Bank will also seek to achieve greater risk allocation balance and diversification between its real estate portfolio and other sectors.
Presenting AUB’s view, Mr. Tareq Muhmood said : “The decision to sell AUB’s share in Kuwait and Middle East Financial Investment Company (KMEFIC) came in line with AUB’s strategic objectives with a view to ensure our focus on our core businesses. He has further commented that the positive impact of this transaction on AUB will serve the interests of both our shareholders and customers.
KMEFIC is a Kuwaiti public shareholding company listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange since July 1997. It operates within the diversified financial sector with emphasis on asset management.