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Tuesday, 23 March 2021

Bank ABC is within arm’s reach of Blom Bank

Bahrain’s Bank ABC is finalizing its acquisition of Lebanon’s Blom Bank’s Egypt arm after getting the green light from Bahrain and Lebanon’s central banks, according to a report in Al Mal’s print edition citing sources it says are in the know. ABC still needs to get the OK from the Central Bank of Egypt, which is expected to come through within a few days and allow the transaction to officially close. The sale includes Blom’s physical and non-physical assets and customer accounts, marking the first of two anticipated exits by Lebanese banks.

A refresher: ABC snagged Blom Egypt after the Bahraini bank said late last year that it was in exclusive talks to acquire 99.42% of Blom’s Egyptian unit, following several months of speculation about whether fellow GCC lender Emirates NBD would compete for the acquisition. ABC already has a presence in Egypt with Bank ABC Egypt, in which it owns a 93% stake. Blom and rival Bank Audi are leaving Egypt as they struggle in their home market of Lebanon.

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