New chairmen for two Dubai banks

DUBAI: His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE, in his capacity as the Ruler of Dubai, has appointed Shaikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum as the chairman of Emirates NBD, and Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum as the chairman of Noor Islamic Bank.Shaikh Ahmed, who is also Chairman of Dubai’s Supreme Fiscal Committee, Dubai Aviation Authority, Chairman of Emirates Group, and Dubai World, replaced Ahmed Humaid Al Tayer as the head of Emirates NBD, the UAE’s biggest bank by assets.Al Tayer, who remains Governor of the Dubai International Financial Centre, has been the chairman of Emirates NBD since its formation in October 2007 following the merger of Emirates Bank International and National Bank of Dubai. Al Tayer is a former UAE Minister of State for Finance and Industry and was also the chairman of Emirates Bank from 1983 until its merger in 2007.Hisham Abdullah Al Kasem was named deputy chairman of Emirates NBD, while Mohammed Obaid Al Shehhi, Mohammed Hadi Ahmed Abdullah Al Husaini and Shoaib Mer Hashim Khouri were appointed as its board members, WAM reported. They replaced Eissa Saleh Al Gurg, Fardan Ali Al Fardan, Khalid Jassem bin Kalban, Abdullah Ahmed Lootah and Hamad Mubarak Bu Amim.Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the new chairman of Noor Islamic Bank, replaces Shaikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum in this position.Both reshuffles are of immediate effect and shall be published in the Gazette.“Revamping the board of Dubai’s largest bank by market value could show the government is setting its sights on changes within the emirate’s banking sector,” Reuters quoted Abdul Kadir Hussain, chief executive of Mashreq Capital as saying. “People change senior management and board because they want things to move in another strategic direction,” Hussain was quoted as saying.

Emirates NBD, in which Dubai’s government has a 55.6 per cent stake, is one of the biggest lenders to state-owned Dubai World and units of Dubai Holding LLC. The bank’s profit dropped over the last two years as loan defaults rose.Emirates NBD shares climbed 2.4 per cent, the most since June 15, to Dh4.20 at 11:20am in Dubai. The stock has gained 52 per cent this year compared with a 5.9 per cent decline in the benchmark DFM General Index.In 2011 first quarter, Emirates NBD’s profit surged 27 per cent, boosted by gains from an asset sale.

In December, Emirates NBD agreed to sell a 49-per cent stake in payments solutions provider Network International to private equity firm Abraaj Capital, a transaction that was completed during the first quarter. The bank said it booked a gain of Dh1.8 billion from the stake sale.The bank’s net income rose to Dh1.41 billion in the first quarter from Dh1.1 billion a year ago, exceeding average profit estimates of Dh1.03 billion by analysts.Total income for the quarter declined by 12 per cent to Dh2.26 billion compared with Dh2.556 billion to the same period in 2010. Net interest income for the quarter declined by five per cent to Dh1.648 billion from Dh1.729 billion in 2010 first quarter. – Khaleejnews