A message from the Chief Executive Officer

Welcome to the Arab Bankers’ Association!

We are an association of bankers and finance professionals who work in Arab financial markets. Most of our members, both corporate and individual, are based in the U.K. but a significant proportion are based outside. Nearly all of us have spent much of our professional lives living and working in the Arab world.

Our aims are simple: to foster improved relations, information sharing and understanding between the private and public sectors in the Arab world and the U.K. We achieve this through our programme of evening seminars and social events, through tailored events for individual members and their clients, and through personal interaction and introductions that are based on decades of business experience.

You will find more information about our work on the various pages of this website. For example, elsewhere on this page you can download a copy of our Annual Magazine; on the “Events” page you can download presentations given at recent evening seminars; and soon we will be adding a new page to our website -- “Arab Banking News” – where you will see a brief round-up of recent events that are relevant to our membership.

The “Join” page also contains a full list of member benefits.

This is an exciting time for Arab banks and their subsidiaries and affiliates in London. Gulf banks are looking to expand their international operations, banks in Egypt and other north African countries are finding their footing after the uncertainties of the Arab Spring, and debt issuance across the region is increasing.

London hosts the largest and most important banking community in Europe, so its not surprising that it is in London that many of the innovative new financial structures that are shaping Arab finance are designed and sold.

The ABA has been serving and promoting Arab banking in London for more than 30 years and we are as enthusiastic and committed to our mission today as we were on the day we were founded. If you are a member, I look forward to working alongside you in the months ahead. If you are not a member, I hope you will consider joining us.

George E. Kanaan Chief Executive Officer


13/05/14  New CEOs for National Bank of Oman and alizz Islamic Bank

News National Bank of Oman announced on 10 May that Ahmed Al Musalmi had been appointed as CEO, succeeding Salaam Al Shaksy, who had served in that role for the last four years. Mr. Musalmi had been Deputy CEO since 2011. Mr. Musalmi holds an MBA from the University of Luton in the United Kingdom and is a graduate of the Harvard Business School Advanced Management Programme.  National Bank of Oman had equity of OR 328 mn ($854mn) at the end of 2013, assets of OR2,896 mn ($7,542) and net profits of OR41mn ($107mn). It is currently rated BBB+ by Fitch, Moody's and S&P. Commercial Bank o...


09/05/14  5 MENA IPOs Raise $1.3bn in 1Q2014

News Five MENA IPOs raised $1,284mn during the first three months of 2014, according to Ernst & Young's 1Q2014 MENA IPO Update. The five IPOs were: Qatar-based Mesaieed Petroleum Holding Company (a subsidiary of Qatar Petroleum), raised $905mn. (This was the first IPO on the Qatar Stock Exchange since 2010.) UAE-based Gulf Marine Services raised $275mn when it listed on the London Stock Exchange. Saudi Marketing Company raised $72mn on the Tadawul (Saudi) stock exchange. Tunisia-based Sotipapier raised $26mn  Tunisia-based Cellcom raised $6mn. In April two Emirati companies launch...


01/05/14  New CEOs for Two More Kuwaiti Banks

News Two more Kuwaiti banks will change their CEOs. Michel Accad, who led Kuwait's Gulf Bank until October 2013, will take the helm at Al Ahli Bank of Kuwait, while Kuwait Finance House announced that its CEO, Mohammed Al Omar, would step down on 1 May. Earlier this year, Ibrahim Dabdoob stepped down as Chief General Manager of National Bank of Kuwait, being replaced by Isam al-Sager.  Michel Accad replaced Colin Plowman, who resigned from the bank in mid-April. Accad's former position at Gulf Bank is now held by Cesar Gonzalez-Bueno.  Mohammed El Omar has led Kuwait Finance House s...


22/04/14  QIB Eyes Strategic Stake in Turkey's Bank Asya

News Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB), Qatar's biggest Islamic bank, has confirmed that it is in exclusive talks to acquire a strategic stake in Bank Aysa, Turkey's biggest Islamic Bank.  QIB has said that Turkey is one of the markets that will be part of its strategy for international expansion. Bank Aysa had equity of $1.1bn at the end of 2013, and assets of $13.2bn. QIB had equity of $3.8bn and assets of $21.2bn at the end of 2013. In Turkey, Islamic banks are known as "Participation Banks" and hold a different type of license from commercial banks. Bank Asya is the 13th biggest bank in Turke...

Fri May 30 2014 - Fri May 30 2014
London Business School's Annual Middle East Conference

Events , Partner Events The London Business School's Middle East Club will host its 12th Annual Middle East Conference on 30th May under the theme, "Bridging the Gap." Keynote speakers will include: HRH Prince Turki bin Faisal Al Saud, the former Saudi Ambassador to the UK, the USA and the Founder of the King Faisal Foundation HE Riad Salameh, the Governor of the Banque du Liban (Central Bank of Lebanon) Shaikha Al Bahar, Deputy Group CEO of the National Bank of Kuwait Group Joe Saddi, Managing Director of Strategy& (formerly know as Booz & Company) The day will include a panel discussion on the futur...