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Thu 13 Aug 2015 01:38 PM

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Kuwait's KFH plans to shed stake in education investment firm

Kuwait Finance House is set to offload interest in Nafais Holding as it restructures its activities

Kuwait's KFH plans to shed stake in education investment firm

Kuwait Finance House, the Gulf Arab state's largest Islamic bank, plans to shed its stake in education investment company Nafais Holding, according to a statement from the Kuwait Stock Exchange.

Kuwait Finance House is currently restructuring its activities, which could also include a sale of assets such as its Malaysian business. This is ahead of planned divestments by its largest shareholder, the Kuwait Investment Authority.

The Exchange said it received a letter from the bank saying that it was seeking to exit its holdings in Nafais and had informed Nafais and the regulator of its plans.

The Islamic bank is the second-largest shareholder in Nafais with a 19.01 percent stake, according to Thomson Reuters data. Nafais, involved in education, healthcare, financing and investment, has a market capitalisation of around $206 million, which would value the bank's stake at close to $40 million.

The Islamic bank only acquired the Nafais stake in March 2014 from Aref Group Company, according to a stock exchange filing at the time.

Nafais shares have been active in the past few days, with 2.95 million shares changing hands on Wednesday after 3.8 million shares traded on Tuesday, their highest daily volumes in 15 months, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Its shares rose 71.1 percent between July 27 and August 10. They were 0.090 dinars on July 27 and hit a closing high of 0.154 dinars on Aug. 10, their highest level since October 2011. They closed at 0.144 dinars on Wednesday.

On July 28, Nafais reported its net profit in the second quarter of 2015 more than doubled to 3.59 million dinars ($11.86 million), which the company attributed to the reversal of a provision against a related party.

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