Five things to know about the GCC banking mergers

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank's merger with Union National Bank and Al Hilal Bank has precedents
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Emirates NBD: In 2007, Emirates NBD was born when Emirates Bank International (EBI) and the National Bank of Dubai (NBD) – the UAE's second and fourth largest banks – merged to become the most significant financial institution in the country. It set the template for the regional banking sector’s consolidation and today its total assets are AED477.5bn, with a network of 227 branches and 1,067 ATMs.
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SABB: Earlier this year, Saudi British Bank and Alawwal Bank joined forces in a $5bn deal that created Saudi Arabia’s third-biggest lender – with combined assets of around $77m. It was the first major deal of the kind in the financial sector in Saudi since Saudi American Bank merged with United Saudi Bank in 1999, forming one of the largest local banks at the time.
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NBAD: In April 2017, National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) integrated First Gulf Bank (FGB) into its operations to create a new entity with close to $200bn in assets – which equates to around 25 percent of the country’s banking sector. The Abu Dhabi government and several state-owned entities own about 37 percent of the merged entity between them.
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Emirates Islamic: Dubai Bank and Emirates Islamic Bank, two financial entities owned by Emirates NBD, merged back in 2012 to create one of the region’s largest Islamic bank. Talks had been going on for the previous two years, with Dubai Bank’s liabilities – which stood at AED15.6bn at the beginning of 2010 – a major sticking point. The bank recorded profits of AED485m in H1, 2018.
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Ibdar Bank: The Bahraini bank is the result of a three-way merger in December 2013 between Capivest, Elaf Bank and Capital Management House –after more than a year of negotiations. The Bahrain Central bank had been encouraging mergers as the sector was struggling to recover from the lingering effects of the aftermath of the global financial crisis.