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Sunday, 19 June 2016

Iran’s Esfahan Steel Seeks Buyers Amid Plan to Boost Production - Bloomberg

Iran’s Esfahan Steel Seeks Buyers Amid Plan to Boost Production - Bloomberg:

"Esfahan Steel Co., Iran’s third-largest maker of the metal, is seeking buyers amid plans to boost production as the nation rebuilds after years of international sanctions that hurt its economy.
Companies in South Korea and Luxembourg are interested in taking a stake, Masoud Gholampour, research and and marketing manager at Novin Investment Bank, said in an interview in Tehran. Novin is advising the government in the sale. Iran and the Steel Pensioners’ Fund for retired Iranian steel workers want to sell a 73 percent stake.
Esfahan Steel aims to boost production to 3.2 million metric tons in the year ended March 2017 from 2.4 million tons a year earlier, according to Mojtaba Fereydoni, an investment manager at Esfahan Steel in Esfahan in central Iran. Output had declined 4 percent a year earlier as economic growth slowed because of low oil prices, he said.
"



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Abu Dhabi banks soar on merger talks; rate rise hits Egypt | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Abu Dhabi banks soar on merger talks; rate rise hits Egypt | Reuters:

"Shares in Abu Dhabi banks soared on Sunday after National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) and First Gulf Bank (FGB) confirmed they were in merger talks. Other Gulf stock markets were mixed while an interest rate increase dragged Egypt down.

NBAD and FGB confirmed in a brief statement they were discussing a merger or combination of their businesses, in what would create one of the largest banks by assets in the Middle East and Africa.

Many analysts said it was too early to take positions in the stocks before details were known."



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Deloitte banned from audit work for two years by Saudi Arabia’s market regulator | The National

Deloitte banned from audit work for two years by Saudi Arabia’s market regulator | The National:

"Saudi Arabia’s market regulator said it had barred the local unit of New York accountancy firm Deloitte & Touche from providing accounting services in the kingdom for two years for breaching rules on accumulated losses.

The move by the Capital Market Authority’s (CMA) Committee for the Resolution of Securities Disputes stepped up penalties already imposed on Deloitte over a long-running case involving its work for troubled Saudi contractor Mohammed Al Mojil Group (MMG).

The CMA previously suspended Deloitte from doing auditing work for listed firms in the kingdom for two years while the case was pending, beginning June 1, 2015."



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Iran, Boeing reach deal on purchase of 100 planes | GulfNews.com

Iran, Boeing reach deal on purchase of 100 planes | GulfNews.com:

"Iran and US aerospace giant Boeing have reached an agreement for the purchase of 100 aircraft to renew the country's ageing fleet, the head of Tehran's civil aviation authority announced on Sunday.

"We have 250 planes in the country, 230 need to be replaced," said Ali Abedzadeh, the head of the civil aviation body, adding that the deal still needed approval from the US government.

In an interview with the Iran daily newspaper, Abedzadeh said there could be no precise timeline for the contract without US Treasury permission."



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Abu Dhabi Merger Seen Just the Start as Banks Face Slower Growth - Bloomberg

Abu Dhabi Merger Seen Just the Start as Banks Face Slower Growth - Bloomberg:

"A potential merger between two of Abu Dhabi’s biggest banks may just be the start of consolidation in the industry.

That’s according to analysts from EFG-Hermes Holding SAE and Emirates NBD PJSC, which say the United Arab Emirates needs more tie-ups because too many banks are serving a relatively small population of 9 million and growth prospects are limited. About 50 local and international lenders face declining government spending, slowing economies and falling asset quality after a slump in oil, the region’s principal export.

In what would be the country’s first major banking merger in almost a decade, National Bank of Abu Dhabi PJSC and First Gulf Bank PJSC said on Sunday that they’re in talks on a potential deal. Senior executives from the two banks are reviewing the commercial, structural and legal aspects of a possible combination, according to a statement. "



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Abu Dhabi banks rocket on merger talks; Gulf mostly up | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Abu Dhabi banks rocket on merger talks; Gulf mostly up | Reuters:

"Shares in Abu Dhabi banks soared early on Sunday on news that National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) and First Gulf Bank (FGB) were in merger talks, while most other stock markets in the Gulf were firm.

NBAD and FGB confirmed in a brief statement on Sunday that they were discussing a merger or combination of their businesses, in what would create the largest bank by assets in the Middle East and Africa.

Many analysts said it was too early to take positions in the stocks before details were known. Some said a merger could benefit shareholders of both banks - Arqaam Capital said FGB would benefit from a stronger wholesale banking operation while NBAD was underepresented in retail banking - but HSBC predicted a pure merger would benefit only NBAD, while a merger through acquisition would destroy shareholder value at both banks."



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Credit Suisse, UBS Said to Work With Abu Dhabi Banks on Merger - Bloomberg

Credit Suisse, UBS Said to Work With Abu Dhabi Banks on Merger - Bloomberg:

"Credit Suisse Group AG and UBS Group AG, which have scaled back from the Gulf since the financial crisis, are advising on the potential merger of Abu Dhabi’s two largest banks, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
Credit Suisse is advising National Bank of Abu Dhabi PJSC on the combination while UBS is working with First Gulf Bank PJSC, said the people, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Credit Suisse, NBAD and FGB declined to comment, while a spokesman for UBS was not immediately available for comment."



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Dubai group agrees to buy control of Kuwait's Americana | Reuters

Dubai group agrees to buy control of Kuwait's Americana | Reuters:

"An investment group led by prominent Dubai businessman Mohamed Alabbar has agreed to buy a majority stake in Kuwait Food Co (Americana) from the Kharafis, a wealthy Kuwaiti merchant family, the group said on Saturday.

Under a legally binding agreement with Al Khair National for Stocks and Real Estate, controlled by the Kharafis, all of Al Khair's Americana shares will be bought at 2.650 dinars each, a 26 percent premium over their last market price, the group, named Adeptio, said in a statement.

Al Khair had been offering a 69 percent stake in Americana, which owns the Middle East franchises for fast food chains KFC and Pizza Hut and also produces branded consumer foods. The stake had been up for sale since early 2014. "



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