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Wednesday, 28 October 2020

Ahli United Bank purchases 30 mn shares in AUB Egypt

M&A WATCH- Bahrain’s Ahli United Bank (AUB) has purchased more than 30 mn shares in its Egypt unit alongside Misr Strategia for EGP 913.1 mn, it said in an announcement posted on EGX screens yesterday. The bank, which controlled 85.5% of its Egypt subsidiary before the transaction, purchased 30.6 mn shares from foreign shareholders and 68.7k shares held by Egyptian shareholders. The Financial Regulatory Authority, which approved the purchase offer last month, said the bank would buy all 43.5 mn of the remaining shares at EGP 29.783 apiece, and that the International Finance Corporation would be offloading a 10% in the bank while Qatar National Bank would sell its 4% stake.

Background: Bahrain’s AUB signaled last month that it was seeking 100% ownership of its Egypt unit by snapping up the shares it didn’t already hold from undisclosed parties. The bank’s 2018 annual report suggests that the bank had already owned 85.5% of its Egyptian subsidiary. The purchase marks a reversal by the parent bank after local press reports earlier this year suggested that it was looking to sell its Egypt unit, or it could be AUB clearing out minority shareholders to streamline ahead of a divestment. Kuwait Finance House has been in the process of acquiring AUB since 2019 but the potential USD 8.8 bn transaction was postponed until December earlier this year due to the covid-19 pandemic.

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