QNB Group, the largest financial institution in Qatar and the Middle East and North Africa Region, announces that it has entered into a definitive agreement with National Bank of Greece for the acquisition of its entire stake comprising 99.81% in Finansbank (IS:FINBN) (Finansbank) inTurkey for a total consideration of €2.7billion (US$2.94 billion).
QNB Group has been a trusted financial institution for over fifty years. Through controlled growth, the bank aspires to become an Icon in the Middle East and Africa by 2017. To achieve this, QNB Group is pursuing inorganic growth in large, high growth markets. Turkey, with its significant market size, population, growth track record, strong economic and banking sector prospects and strategic location as a gateway between Europe and Asia represents such a market and is therefore of strategic importance for QNB Group. Turkey’s ties with the rest of the region have increased in recent years, as trade with the Middle East and North Africa region has risen nearly ten-fold from US$5.6billion in 2000 to US$52.2billion in 2014.
Finansbank is the fifth largest privately owned universal bank by total assets, customer deposits and loans in the Turkish market. The bank was incorporated in 1987 and acquired by National Bank of Greece, which currently has a shareholding of 99.81%. Finansbank has grown organically into a full service financial institution with an independent and experienced management, nationwide distribution network of 647 branches and over 5.3 million customers. As of 30 June 2015, Finansbank has US$29.0 billion of assets, US$19.5 billion in loans and US$14.6billion in deposits and total equity amounted to US$3.6 billion as per International Financial Reporting Standards. Finansbank has a strong capital base with a capital adequacy ratio of 15.9%, which is among the highest in the Turkish banking sector,together with solid long-term foreign currency ratings of Ba2 and BBB- by Moody’s and Fitch,which are a testament to Finansbank’s successful business, operating model and risk management.
QNB intends to fund the purchase through its own funds and will remain strongly capitalized after the acquisition in line with its Group targets.
Commenting on the announcement, QNB Group’s Chief Executive Officer Ali Ahmed Al-Kuwari said: “This transaction is a significant milestone in QNB’s Vision to becoming a MEA Icon by 2017 and a leading global bank by 2030. Finansbank is a highly regarded financial institution with an impressive track recordof success in Turkey, and we look forward to welcoming the personnel and management of Finansbank to QNB Group. We also look forward to contributing towards Turkey’s future economic development andfurther enhancing its overall connectivity with international markets as an integral part of QNB Group’s global network”
QNB Capital and J.P. Morgan are acting as joint financial advisors, while Clifford Chance is acting as lead legal counsel and Yegin Çiftçi Attorney Partnership is acting as local legal counsel for the transaction.
The transaction has been approved by the board of directors of both banks and the General Council of the Hellenic Financial Stability Fund.
The closing of the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2016.
About QNB Group
Qatar National Bank (QNB Group), was established in 1964 as the country’s first Qatari-owned commercial bank, has an ownership structure split between the Qatar Investment Authority (50%) and the private sector (50%).
QNB Group has steadily grown to be the biggest bank in Qatar and leading financial institution in the Middle East and North Africa Region with a market share around 45% of banking sector assets.
Bloomberg Markets, the leading provider of Business, Financial and Economic news ranked QNB as “One of the World’s Strongest Banks” again in 2014.
The Global Finance Magazine ranked QNB as “One of The Top 50 Safest Banks in the World” in 2013. For two consecutive years, 2014 and 2015, the Bank was recognized as “The Best Bank in The Middle East” by Euromoney Magazine.
For the nine months ended 30 September 2015, the Group recorded a net profit of QAR8.7 billion (USD2.4 billion), up by 9.0% compared to last year. Total assets increased by 9.6% from September 2014 to reach QAR521 billion (USD143.1 billion), the highest ever achieved by the Group. This was the result of a strong growth rate of 11.5% in loans and advances to reach QAR367 billion (USD100.7 billion).
QNB Group continues to witness robust international expansion. QNB has acquired a 20.0% stake (both ordinary and QNB convertible preference shares) in Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (Ecobank), the leading pan-African bank.In 2013, the Group successfully completed the acquisition of a controlling stake of the second largest private bank in Egypt, QNB ALAHLI (QNBAA), amounting to 97.12%. The Group has also extended its regional reach by acquiring stakes in various financial institutions including 35% stake in the Jordan-based, the Housing Bank for Trade and Finance (HBTF), 40% in Commercial Bank International (CBI) based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), 99.96% of QNB Tunisia, 51% in the Iraqi-based Mansour Bank, 49% of the Libyan based Bank of Commerce & Development and 20% stake in Al Jazeera Finance Company in Doha. QNB Group also retains 51% stake in QNB-Syria and an 82.59% stake in QNB Indonesia (previously known as QNB Kesawan). In 2013, QNB Group also opened a representative office in China and established a fully owned subsidiary in India under the name of “QNB India Private Limited”.
In March 2015, QNB Group officially started operating its “Qatar National Bank S.A.Q. Ho Chi Minh City Representative Office” in Vietnam.
The Group’s presence through its subsidiaries and associate companies extends to more than 27 countries across three continents providing a comprehensive range of advanced products and services. The total number of employees is more than 15,000 operating through more than 635 locations, with an ATM network of more than 1,350 machines.
The Group provides an array of investment banking services through its subsidiary, QNB Capital, to corporate, government and institutional clients within Qatar and globally. QNB Capital has one of the best corporate finance teams in the GCC region offering extensive transaction experience and in depth advisory – including mergers and acquisitions, equity and debt capital markets, and project financing advisory.The Group also offers brokerage services through its subsidiary, QNB Financial Services (QNB FS), the first independently regulated, licensed brokerage company launched by a bank in Qatar. QNB FS offers a multi-market, multi-currency trading platform with access to several markets.
QNB Group is among the highest rated regional banks from leading credit rating agencies including Standard & Poor’s (A+), Moody’s (Aa3), Fitch (AA-), and Capital Intelligence (AA-). The Bank has also been the recipient of many awards from leading international specialised financial publications.
Based on the Group’s continuous strong financial performance and its expanding international presence, QNB is currently ranked as the most valuable bank brand in The Middle East and Africa, with a current world ranking of 79 in 2015 and a brand valuation of $2.6 billion according to Brand Finance Magazine.
QNB Group has an active community support program and sponsors various social, educational and sporting events.
About Finansbank A.Ş.
Finansbank, established in Turkey in 1987, is a subsidiary of National Bank of Greece (99.81% stake) and is one of the largest private banks operating in the country. Finansbank serves more than 5.3 million customers through over 13,000 banking professionals. Finansbank operates through a large corporate and retail platform complemented by ancillary services including investment banking, brokerage, leasing, factoring and asset management. As of 30 September 2015, Finansbank has 647 branches, covering 71 out of 81 primary cities of Turkey.
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