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Monday, 17 February 2020

Bank Audi is looking to offload Arabeya Online

M&A WATCH- Bank Audi is looking to offload the entirety of its 100% stake in online brokerage firm Arabeya Online and has already received offers of interest from a number of would-be buyers, Al Mal reports, citing sources close to the matter. The Lebanese bank has already granted a handful of these investors the green light to begin the due diligence process, which the sources expect to wrap in 1Q2020. Audi is in direct contact with the investors and reportedly has no intention of hiring financial advisors for the transaction.

Arabeya was founded in 2006 by current Public Enterprises Minister Hisham Tawfik and his brother, Hany. Bank Audi had bought into the online securities brokerage in 2010, when it snapped up Hisham Tawfik’s 10% stake and Al Naeem Holding Group’s 80% stake. Audi then acquired the remaining 10% in 2015, giving it full ownership of Arabeya.

Background: News of the potential Arabeya Online sale comes after Bank Audi announced it was looking to sell its Egypt unit to First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) last month as it seeks to exit the country amid Lebanon’s ongoing financial crisis. Bank Audi has tapped EFG Hermes as its financial advisor for the transaction and FAB is currently undergoing a formal evaluation of Audi.

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