UAE: First Gulf Bank and National Bank of Abu Dhabi complete merger

The Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA), the market regulator in the UAE, has issued a certificate confirming the completion of the merger between First Gulf Bank (FGB) and the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD). The merger has resulted in the creation of the largest financial institution in the Middle East and North Africa by assets, with around Dh642 billion in assets, and one of the biggest in the UAE by market share, with RFi Group data showing that the merged entity will have the third largest market reach in the UAE retail banking market, behind only Emirates NBD and ADCB.

Costs savings have been stated as a key the driver behind the merger, with the combined bank able to remove duplicate branches and share resources, with Egyptian investment bank EFG-Hermes expecting the merger to produce savings of about Dh500 million a year from 2019. The ability to compete internationally and capture trade coming to the UAE have also been cited as drivers behind the merger. The merger will see the institutions face a onetime unification costs of around Dh600 million.

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