First Gulf Bank said it’s planning new hires for its investment banking business and is seeking to double the share of profit from its international unit in five years.
Bloomberg News reports that the Abu Dhabi-based lender, which has two mandates to arrange initial public offerings for local companies, will hire bankers in mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity capital markets, Chief Executive Officer Andre Sayegh said in an interview yesterday.
The lender also plans new offices in South Korea, China and Indonesia over the next 18 months as it seeks to raise the contribution of international business to profit to the 'teens or more' from 5% last year, he said.
First Gulf Bank aims to 'provide more value' to companies through its investment banking services such as helping them access capital markets, risk-hedging and Islamic banking, Sayegh said. 'I expect more listings to happen probably starting next year and to be even encouraged by the government.'
The U.A.E. has the biggest banking market in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council, which also includes Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Fifty-one commercial banks operate in the country, including HSBC and Citigroup.
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