CBK eyes Watany stake

Commercial Bank of Kuwait is planning to bid for a 60% stake in Egyptian lender Al-Watany.
CBK eyes Watany stake
By Reuters
Sun 05 Aug 2007 01:29 AM

Commercial Bank of Kuwait (CBK) plans to bid for a 60 % stake in Egyptian lender Al-Watany Bank of Egypt, a Kuwaiti newspaper said on Saturday.

Al-Watan also said an unidentified Kuwaiti investor plans to acquire 10 % in the Egyptian bank.

"Commercial Bank of Kuwait has set a price offer of not more than three times the book value of the Egyptian bank," Watan said, quoting unidentified sources at CBK.

CBK officials were not immediately available for comment.

Egypt's central bank agreed in June to allow three banks, including CBK and National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), to conduct due diligence studies that could lead to potential offers for the Egyptian bank, Watany said on June 20.

The two Kuwaiti lenders could compete with Greece's EFG Eurobank for the Watany stake.

Kuwaiti newspapers said last week a CBK delegation led by Chairman Abdulmajeed al-Shatti and Chief General Manager Jamal al-Mutawa was visiting Egypt for talks.

CBK, Kuwait's fourth-largest lender by market value, has expanded abroad as competition increases in its home market. It has started operations in Iraq and Syria, and is the largest shareholder in Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait.

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