The Manama-based Gulf International Bank (GIB) confirmed a 38.5 per cent rise in profits to a record $88.2 million at the bank's annual general meeting in Riyadh on 18 April. Results for the start of 1994 are expected to be equally strong, in part due to an increased level of project financing, GIB sources say.
GIB is one of four banks which in April were awarded the mandate to raise a $680 million loan for the Qatar Liquefied Gas Company (Qatargas) project (see Qatar).
It is one of several new project financing deals that GIB has been involved in since the start of 1994, including co-arranging $200 million for the Qatar Petrochemical Company (Qapco) expansion, the $225 million loan to Al-Jubail Fertiliser Company (Samad), and the $75 million Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) loan (MEED 1:4:94, Saudi Arabia; 18:3:94, Qatar; 28:1:94, Bahrain).
'GIB has continued to pursue its Gulf-related business strategy....I am confident of the bank's ability to further develop its core regional banking business,' said chairman Ibrahim Abdul-Karim, who is also Bahrain's finance and national economy minister. GIB says it will also focus on finance for top-tier corporations and a wider range of investment products (MEED 4:2:94).
GIB attributes part of the rise in 1993 profits to a sharp increase in income from securities trading. This enabled GIB to maintain its dividend at $45 million for the second year in a row. The level of securities rose by 22 per cent to $2,036.4 million.
Total assets rose by 13 per cent to $7,171.8 million. Loans, which account for 40 per cent of assets, declined by 3 per cent to $3,060.1 million, with the emphasis remaining on short-term relationship-based lending. Customer deposits fell by 12 per cent to $2,615.8 million. Shareholders' equity rose by 8.9 per cent to $528.4 million and the return on equity rose to 16.7 per cent from 13.1 per cent in 1992.
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