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Sun 27 Apr 2008 10:35 AM

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Burgan Bank closes in on $1bn United Gulf deal

Kuwait investment bank to buy commercial lending activities of Bahrain bank.

Burgan Bank closes in on $1bn United Gulf deal
DEAL CLOSE: Burgan Bank, pictured, is close to buying the commercial lending arm of UGB, Al-Rai reported.

Kuwaiti lender Burgan Bank is close to buying the commercial lending activities of Bahrain's United Gulf Bank (UGB) for more than $1 billion, Kuwait's Al-Rai newspaper reported on Sunday.

UGB would make a profit of $570 million from the sale, Al-Rai said, without citing anyone.

Burgan owner Kuwait Projects Company (Kipco) said last month it wants to set up a dedicated investment banking and asset management unit, and another that provides other commercial services, such as retail and corporate.

Burgan Bank Chief Executive Jonathan Lyon told newswire Reuters earlier this month the lender wanted to acquire banks in the Middle East and Northern Africa as part an expansion programme.

UGB said last month it was in talks to sell some of its assets, without identifying a suitor.

Burgan Bank officials could not be immediately reached for comment.

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