Higher fee income helped to produce a return to profit in 1996 at the Dar al-Maal al-Islami Group (DMI), which runs a network of Islamic financial institutions worldwide. DMI made net profits of $10.1 million last year, compared to a loss of $8 million in 1995.

The Geneva-based group’s consolidated assets rose by 6.4 per cent to $931.5 million while funds under its management increased by 34 per cent to $3,292 million. However, gross income from fund management and services fell during the year. DMI chief executive Omar Ali told MEED last year that the group was going to put more emphasis in future on financial services, and the effort seems to have paid off: fee and commission income rose by 52 per cent to $32.5 million. One of the group’s larger interests is its 53 per cent shareholding in Faysal Islamic Bank of Bahrain, which itself reported net profits of just under $14 million for last year on assets of $356 million (MEED 11:4:97).

DMI continued to reorganise its operations to face growing competition in the Islamic financial industry. It raised its shareholding in Faisal Finance Institution in Turkey to 67 per cent, and shut down another subsidiary, Faisal Finance (Denmark). It also made a commitment to put $10 million into a $50 million capital increase planned by its Egyptian affiliate, Faisal Islamic Bank of Egypt. The group currently owns just over 12 per cent of the bank’s equity (MEED 1:11:96).