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Wednesday, 6 February 2008

QIB’s subsidiary, European Financial House, receives licence from the FSA

QIB's European subsidiary, European Finance House (EFH), has received authorisation from the Financial Services Authority to operate as an Islamic investment bank in the United Kingdom.
The European Financial House will provide Shari'ah compliant financial services to corporate clients, primarily in the UK and Continental Europe, as well as clients in the GCC.The Financial Services Authority licence authorises the European Finance House to operate as a fully fledged bank including authorisation to operate in the personal banking sector. However, its short term strategy is to focus on investment banking and corporate clients.Salah Jeidah, CEO of QIB and an EFH board member, explained "We are pleased to start the year with the FSA licence, which will allow us to operate officially in the United Kingdom. EFH is not just another bank entering the London Market, but a one of its kind institution for 3 reasons.It is the only Islamic bank in London that can claim a pedigree going back twenty five years, thanks to its majority shareholder, QIB, which has been a pioneer Islamic bank since 1982.Secondly, it is the only Islamic bank in London that is part of a global network and can thus offer its clients cross-continent transactions in the Middle East via QIB, and in Asia via our affiliates Asian finance bank (AFB). Last but not least, we have been able to attract high calibre executives with large experience in the European and UK banking sectors."The objective of the European Finance House is to establish a cutting edge position in the rapidly expanding area of Islamic Finance. A key objective for the bank will be to build close partnerships with its corporate, institutional and high net worth clients by providing alternative Shari'ah compliant investment solutions.The European Finance House is confident that it will become an integral part of the Islamic banking market in the UK as it is supported by the expertise of QIB, a majority shareholder of EFH , as well as Centuria, a second shareholder, which is a European asset management firm specialising in real estate.EFH Chief Executive, Michael Clark added "With this license and the very significant backing of our shareholders, we intend to become one of the leading Islamic banks in Europe, by means of a sustained focus on the fastest growing sector of financing and investment.London is now widely regarded as the principle financial hub for Islamic banking outside the Middle East and we intend to meet this expanding market with high quality products and services which will enable us to build close partnerships with our clients."The European Finance House will offer products and solutions to a wide range of clients in the UK and will play a major role in attracting investment from the Middle East into the UK and Europe. The bank will also support and accompany UK and European investors who are interested in participating in the rapidly expanding Middle East market. --(AB, 6Feb08)

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