More than 20 Gulf financial institutions with total assets exceeding $1 trillion are said to be in merger talks
Commercial Bank of Dubai (CBD) has denied reports it is considering mergers of acquisitions and remains committed to its current growth strategy, the bank said in a statement on Wednesday.
"The board of Commercial Bank of Dubai would like to clarify that there are no discussions whatsoever concerning mergers, acquisitions or activities of a similar nature," the bank said in a statement posted to the Dubai Financial Market.
"Board and management are fully committed to successful execution of the approved strategy, which has resulted in strong results over 2018 and the first quarter of this year," the statement added.
The CBD statement follows media reports that Al Futtaim Group – which owns a 10.5 percent stake in the bank – is examining options for the lender, which may include the sale of its stake.
The report added that Al Futtaim may also encourage a merger between CBD and another institution.
The GCC’s banking sector has seen a number of mergers and acquisitions over the course of the last 24 months.
According to Bloomberg, more than 20 Gulf financial institutions with total assets exceeding $1 trillion are in merger talks.
The latest banks said to be in talks are Dubai Islamic Bank and smaller rival Noor Bank. An acquisition would create a lender with AED278 billion ($76 billion) in assets.
A recent report from S&P Global Ratings, however, said that the wave of M&A activity may be coming to an end, with the pool of banks with common major shareholders shrinking.