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Thu 10 May 2007 01:24 PM

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Alliance considers another takeover bid

The Oman bank seeks five times its book value after a bid from Bank Muscat was rejected.

Oman's Alliance Housing Bank is considering a takeover bid from another local bank and is seeking a price of about five times the mortgage lender's book value, its largest shareholder said on Thursday.

"There was a feeling that Alliance should get a much higher valuation than was offered," said Akbar Habib, chief executive of Oman National Investment Corp. Holding, which owns 20% of Alliance.

Alliance said earlier it had rejected a bid from Bank Muscat of 0.375 rials ($0.97) per share, or 2.61 times book value.

"We have another bid from a local bank that is offering more favourable terms," Habib told Reuters from Muscat, adding that Oman National was seeking about five times book value.

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