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Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait, Ithmaar Holding discuss acquisition plans

Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait, Ithmaar Holding discuss acquisition plans

The plans, subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals, are still in the preliminary discussions phase

Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait (BBK) and Ithmaar Holding, the parent entity of Ithmaar Bank, have commenced initial discussions to explore a potential acquisition by BBK of Bahrain operations of Ithmaar Bank.

Besides the Islamic retail lender, the acquisition will also include specific assets of IB Capital, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ithmaar Holding, BBK said in a statement filed on Bahrain’s bourse.

The plans, subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals, are still in the preliminary discussions phase, and subject to the completion of due diligence by both parties, the statement read.

The acquisition will further BBK’s operations in Bahrain and add a turn-key, full-service Islamic banking solution, while also bolstering the Ithmaar Bank brand.

Details of the plans will be announced in due course, following necessary approvals.

“BBK has long played a key leadership role in the kingdom of Bahrain’s banking and financial services industry,” said BBK chairman Murad Ali Murad.

“To maintain this leadership role, and as part of its ongoing business expansion strategy, BBK has been exploring opportunities to expand its activities and diversify its offerings, particularly in Sharia-compliant banking businesses. Ithmaar Bank seems a natural fit, and we look forward to exploring this possible acquisition further,” he said.

“Ithmaar Bank, an Islamic retail bank, played a pioneering role in the establishment and subsequent development of Islamic banking in the region,” said Ithmaar Holding chairman, Prince Amr Al Faisal.

“A wholly-owned subsidiary of Ithmaar Holding, Ithmaar Bank is a growing, resilient bank that continues to invest in the future and plays a key role in the community. This transaction is in line with Ithmaar Holding’s strategy of creating value for its shareholders, and we look forward to exploring this possible opportunity further,” he added.

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