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Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Attijariwafa acquires Barclays Egypt

BARCLAYS BANK HAS AGREED TO SELL its Egyptian unit to Morocco’s Attijariwafa Bank. Barclays says the sale of 100% of its Egyptian subsidiary is expected to reduce its risk-weighted assets by GBP 2 bn, boosting its core capital ratio by nearly 0.1%. “Barclays Bank Egypt has approximately 1,500 employees and 56 branches. Completion is subject to regulatory approvals, and is currently expected to occur by the end of 2016.”

Neither Barclays nor the Casablanca-listed lender’s statement yesterday (pdf) disclosed the value of the transaction. The bid has previously been rumored to be in the USD 500 mn neighborhood. The Financial Times (paywall) puts the sale value at USD 500, while Reuters says unnamed sources have previously valued Barclays Egypt at about USD 400 mn.

Attijariwafa Chairman and CEO Mohamed El Kettani said: “The Egyptian economy and banking sector offer significant growth prospects in the medium and long term. Barclays Bank Egypt, thanks to its positioning, highly talented management and motivated workforce, strong capitalization and clean balance sheet is the ideal platform to roll out Attijariwafa bank’s universal banking model in Egypt.”

The new kid on the block: Based in Casablanca and traded on the Casablanca Stock Exchange. Attijariwafa Bank has a 20-country footprint with brands including Attijari Bank in Tunisia, CBAO in Senegal, SIB in Ivory Coast, CBAO in Burkina Faso, BIM in Mali, among others. Attijariwafa employs some 17,367 people. It had a market cap of USD 7.4 bn last week and reported “net banking income of USD 1.9 bn and net income of USD 535 mn” in 2015. Attijariwafa bills itself as a universal bank offering “retail banking, private banking, corporate & investment banking, specialized financial services, asset management, insurance and international retail banking.”

Attijariwafa bank was advised by UBS Investment Bank, Attijari Finances Corp., Naciri & Associés Allen & Overy, Sharkawy & Sarhan Law Firm and Mazars. Barclays, which first opened in Egypt in 1864, did not disclose its advisors.

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