Bank Audi’s exclusive negotiations with First Abu Dhabi Bank are currently underway, as the former considers selling its Egyptian subsidiary, referred to as Bank Audi SAE. However, discussions are still at an early stage and any final agreements will be subject to the regulatory approvals, laws and directives of the Lebanese and Egyptian Central Banks.
In its statement, Bank Audi also elaborated on choosing “First Abu Dhabi Bank” as its prime bidder, explaining that the latter is “a very appropriate match for the customers, management and staff of Bank Audi Egypt”, given its “strong regional profile and its proven resources to complete the transaction in a timely manner[…].”
Bank Audi believes that the proceeds of the sale of its Egyptian subsidiary, whose assets totaled $4.4B and equity stood at $427M in Q3 2019, will help enhance Audi Group’s “liquidity and financial resilience”. It is worth noting that Audi Bank has no current intention to negotiate the sale of any other foreign subsidiaries it owns.
On a final note, Bank Audi’s negotiations to sell its Egyptian subsidiary constitute part of the Group’s reinforced financial positioning plan, noting that this last had already begun with common shareholders agreeing to shore up Audi Bank’s Core equity by 10% through cash contributions, as per BDL’s Circular No.532. In fact the Board of Directors scheduled an extraordinary general assembly on February 20th 2020, to finalize the acceptance of terms and conditions of the cash contributions.
Commenting on both operations, Audi Group’s CFO Tamer Ghazaleh clarified that, “[the increase in Audi Bank’s core equity and the negotiations to sell Bank Audi SAE] represent a vote of confidence in Bank Audi’s domestic and regional operations, and should consolidate the Group’s role in facing the considerable challenges Lebanon is dealing with since the last quarter.”
Source: Beirut Stock Exchange, Audi Bank