NBK received offers of more than $3.7bn from existing shareholders as part of the bank’s capital raising. The Kuwaiti bank owned 96 per cent of the Egyptian lender by November, a stake that is thought to have cost about $1bn, although NBK has said it plans to buy out the remaining shareholders.

It will then begin investing in expanding the branch network of Al Watany by more than tripling the number of branches in Egypt from 21 to 75 in the next five years, and improving the Egyptian bank’s product offering.

In 2007 KNK also paid $160m for Istanbul-based Turkish Bank as part of its strategy to expand outside of Kuwait.