Egyptian bank CIB’s shares swing wildly on reports of chairman exit

Egyptian bank CIB’s shares swing wildly on reports of chairman exit
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Updated 24 October 2020

Egyptian bank CIB’s shares swing wildly on reports of chairman exit

Egyptian bank CIB’s shares swing wildly on reports of chairman exit
  • Claims Hisham Ezz Al-Arab dismissed for malpractice spark dramatic plunge and trading suspension

LONDON: The London-listed shares of Egypt’s Commercial International Bank (CIB) rebounded on Friday after plunging more than 40 percent in morning trade after local media reports that its chairman had been dismissed.

CIB, Egypt’s biggest listed bank, has substantial foreign holdings and Chairman Hisham Ezz Al-Arab is among the country’s leading bankers and a well-known figure in Middle Eastern finance.
The bank, Ezz El-Arab and the Egyptian central bank did not respond to requests for comment from Reuters and there were no reports on Egypt’s state news agency.
The Egyptian stock exchange said it had suspended CIB’s shares from trading in Cairo after a request from the Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) on Thursday morning. The exchange and FRA could not be reached for comment.
The bank, which says it has 207 branches and serves 1.4 million customers, held a lengthy board meeting on Thursday afternoon, a CIB communications officer said.

FASTFACT

Egypt’s Commercial International Bank has 207 branches and serves 1.4 million customers.

Its global depository receipts (GDRs) in London fell as much as 41 percent on Friday morning before recovering to trade up on the day. The GDRs fell 17 percent on Thursday. CIB’s Cairo-listed shares last traded on Oct 21, Refinitiv data shows.
A letter purporting to be from Egypt’s central bank circulated on social media on Thursday, informing CIB CEO Hussein Abaza that the central bank had decided to dismiss Ezz Al-Arab for alleged financial malpractice, utilising a new law passed this year.
Reuters could not verify the letter or whether Ezz Al-Arab had been the subject of any malpractice investigation.
Ezz Al-Arab has led a team that has transformed the bank from a wholesale lender into one that leads its sector in revenue, net worth and market share of deposits, its website says.
Egypt’s private banking sector has gradually expanded over past few decades and the government has been more aggressive in privatizing banks than in many other sectors.
The central bank has been planning to sell stakes in several banks it owns, including Banque du Caire, Egypt’s third largest state-owned bank, but plans have been put on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic.


Saudi Arabia’s Amkest Group signs deal with US green energy firm

Amr Khashoggi, Chairman of Amkest Group and Scott Poulter, Chief Executive of Pacific Green Technologies
Updated 05 December 2020

Saudi Arabia’s Amkest Group signs deal with US green energy firm

Saudi Arabia’s Amkest Group signs deal with US green energy firm
  • Its expansion into Saudi Arabia through this joint venture is no surprise since the Kingdom is aiming for 30 percent of its energy to come from renewable sources by 2030

RIYADH: US-based Pacific Green Technologies Inc. (PGTK) has signed a joint venture agreement with Amr Khashoggi Trading Co. Ltd. (Amkest Group) to incorporate a company in Saudi Arabia for the sale of Pacific Green environmental technologies.
Amkest Group, founded in 1983, has a history of success in the Kingdom. Its diverse business portfolio includes construction material production and supply, property development and consulting services.
Commenting on the partnership, Scott Poulter, PGTK’s CEO, said: “Saudi Arabia under its Vision 2030 strategic framework, which calls for 9.5 GW of the Kingdom’s energy to be supplied through renewables by 2030, is set to undergo rapid growth.”
Poulter added: “Pacific Green’s technologies, particularly in the solar power, desalination and battery energy storage system sectors, provide the perfect solution to the Kingdom’s growing demand, and we are excited to leverage Amkest Group’s hard-earned relationships to contribute toward the goals of Vision 2030.”
Amr Khashoggi, chairman of Amkest Group, said: “We believe the combination of our experience and knowledge of the Saudi market, coupled with Pacific Green’s portfolio of technologies, provides the foundation for an incredible partnership and the opportunity to offer multiple complementary technologies.”
Pacific Green is focused on addressing the world’s need for cleaner and more sustainable energy. Its expansion into Saudi Arabia through this joint venture is no surprise since the Kingdom is aiming for 30 percent of its energy to come from renewable sources by 2030.
The deal comes on the back of an expectation that Saudi Arabia will attract more than $20 billion in investments in renewables over the next decade. This forecast was made by the CEO of Saudi National Grid in October, according to a report by S&P Global.