Habib Bank growing steadily in UK

LONDON: Habib Bank is making steady strides in the UK through its consumer friendly strategies that has allowed the financial organisation to have turn over of GBP 5.2 million last year.Speaking at a weekend dinner hosted in honour of its outgoing UK CEONauman Dar, Zakir Mahmood, Chairman, Habib Bank UK said the bank enjoys immense brand amongst its South Asian clientele whose confidence has enabled it to achieve greater heights.He paid tributes to the leadership of Dar for increasing the profitability of the bank from GBP 1 and half million during his eight years in London as the chief executive officer to its current position.Habib Bank UK, was incorporated in the UK in 2001.It is a 90.5% owned subsidiary of Habib Bank Limited (HBL). The remaining 9.5% is owned by Allied Bank Limited.The majority ownership of HBL (51%) rests with the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED) which is registered in Switzerland. 49% is owned by the Government of Pakistan and the eight per cent is listed on the Karachi Stock Exchange.Mahmood said over the years, HBL has grown its branch network and become the largest private sector bank in Pakistan with over 1,450 branches.HBL also has global presence through branches, subsidiaries and affiliates in 25 countries.He told the gathering that in May this year, Habib Bank acquired Habib Sons UK, the original founding family of Habib Bank, together with its Zurich and Leicester branches. These acquisitions, he added, will allow the bank to flourish further and create value for shareholders.

“We understand the personal and business requirements of the South Asian communities and are dedicated to serve their needs through exercising the values of excellence, integrity and customer focus,” Mahmood said.The incoming CEO Anwar Zaidi in his remarks on the occasion, said by adhering to the basic banking principles, Habib Bank UK has been able to see through the difficult and volatile conditions of the recent years.He praised the managerial skill of his predecessor and said : Through the dedication of all my colleagues and the able stewardship of Nauman, HBL UK has grown steadily into a size that allowed us to join up with another entity in the UK to double our balance sheet.Dar in his valedictory remarks thanked his colleagues for their support and assistance in helping the bank to grow and progress to its current position and said he looks forward to new challenges in Karachi where he will be the head of both HBL International and of the corporate banking. – Brecorder