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Sunday, 19 August 2007

Bahrain-based Shamil Bank announced a record net profit of $53.2 million for the six months of the year

MANAMA: Bahrain-based Shamil Bank yesterday announced a record net profit of $53.2 million for the six months of the year. This represents a more than 62 per cent leap from the $32.8m reported for the same time last year, for the bank which is a leading Islamic commercial and investment bank and member of the Ithmaar banking group. Total income also rose by $21.9m over the same time last year last year, while earnings per share rose to 5.8 US cents 5.8 from 3.6 cents. Consolidated total assets rose by $355.8m, from $1.7bn as of last December 31, to $2bn at the end of June this year. Meanwhile, unrestricted investment accounts rose by $129.5m, or 15.5pc, from $838m to $967.6m, reflecting increasing investor confidence due to the lucrative profit rates offered by the bank. "This is proving to be a very exciting year for Shamil Bank, which is witnessing many important developments across all its business lines," said chairman Mohamed Al Anqari. "Our stellar results so far are a reflection of improvements in our commercial banking operations and the exiting of a number of strategic investments. "The board applauds the efforts of the management team and staff, which have allowed Shamil Bank to go from strength to strength. We have every faith that the future is going to be equally impressive." The bank is currently going through one of the most active periods in its history, which was reflected in its latest results, said chief executive and board member Mohammed Hussain. "The bank is taking proactive steps to improve our services and attract more business," he said. "The last quarter saw the introduction of the new I-Flex core banking system, which is contributing significantly to the efficiency and quality of our operations and will undoubtedly do so for many years to come. "We are working to expand our commercial banking network with two new branches scheduled to open shortly in Umm Al Hassam and Arad. "Recent months also saw the launch of our new 100 per cent capital protected Shamil Navigator Modaraba fund, which was extremely well received by the retail segment of the market. "The three-year Sharia compliant investment product gave investors exposure to the best returns achieved on a basket of global Islamic equities and commodities, while providing them with the added security of capital protection at maturity." An important development for the bank during the quarter was a reduction in its stake in Karachi-based Meezan Bank from 26pc to seven pc. This sale earned Shamil Bank a healthy 17pc internal rate of return (IRR) and a 46 pc return on investment (ROI) each year, since the inception of this investment 10 years ago. "Our strong customer growth is being reflected across the board in all our lines, which include retail banking, investments, financing for individuals and businesses, Islamic credit cards, Takaful insurance and private banking for high net worth customers," said Mr Hussain. "These will also be reflected in the coming period. Our associates and subsidiaries, including Faysal Bank Limited, Pakistan and Faisal Private Bank, Switzerland, also continued to do well. "Shamil Bank is ploughing ahead in implementing its strategy of expanding its corporate banking and retail operations, while improving delivery channels and introducing new products. "With more deals down the road and the continued expansion of our commercial banking business, Shamil Bank is showing that it is a truly comprehensive institution." - (GDN, 19 Aug 07)

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