By Stanley Carvalho
Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank to buy into RHB Capital to offer Islamic financial services.
Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) said on Tuesday it was looking to pay about $1.2 billion for a stake in Malaysia's RHB Capital to offer Islamic financial services in the Southeast Asian country.
ADCB is in talks to buy the 25% stake from the Malaysian government's Employees Provident Fund and is close to concluding the deal, which it first announced in December.
"ADCB expects to conclude the deal very soon pending our final negotiations and making payment to RHB. ADCB has an exclusivity on the deal," a senior official of the UAE-based lender told newswire Reuters by telephone.
ADCB said in December it was in exclusive talks to buy the stake, without giving a value.
Saeed Al-Hajeri, chairman of ADCB, said in a statement on Tuesday that the investment was "part of the long-term strategy of the ADCB to expand outside the GCC region, and we see huge potential for synergies between RHB and ADCB".
RHB is the fourth-largest banking group in Malaysia and has banking operations in Singapore, Thailand and Brunei. It has 280 retail banking branches, investment banking operations and an Islamic subsidiary that is the sixth-largest Islamic bank in Asia. (Reuters)