Europe

BRIEF-Turkey's TMSF says Bank Asya cannot be returned to original shareholders

TMSF fund says Bank Asya will either be sold or merged within this period, or liquidated if that not possible.

UPDATE 1-Turkey to liquidate Bank Asya if sale not agreed within three months

Turkey's Bank Asya will not be returned to its original shareholders after being seized by the government last year, the deposit insurance fund that now owns the bank said, adding that it would pursue liquidation if a buyer is not found within three months. Within the framework of the existing legal situation, the return of the bank to its (shareholders) is not possible, the Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) said on Tuesday, adding that it had given the bank a three-month deadline from Feb. 29 to find a buyer or be merged. If this is not possible, its liquidation will come on to the agenda, the TMSF said.

Investment banking arm of Qatar’s Barwa scours Turkey for deals

The First Investor (TFI), the investment banking arm of Qatar’s Barwa Bank, is looking for investments in Turkey, in sectors ranging from real estate to food, its acting chief executive Yousef Al Obaidan said. TFI has not specified a budget for Turkey, although its existing holdings in the Gulf region average around $100-$150 million per investment, Al Obaidan said. Individual investments in Turkey could exceed that, he said. The bank, which is also involved in private equity and asset management, is particularly interested in Turkey’s real estate, healthcare, education and food and beverage industries, Al Obaidan said. TFI is already active in Turkey, where Kiler, a REIT, mandated it in December for the sale of the Istanbul Sapphire shopping center and residence.

Turkey’s Ziraat Islamic unit applies for 1.5 bln lira sukuk

The Islamic lending arm of Turkey’s state-run Ziraat Bank has applied to sell 1.5 billion lira ($501.9 million) worth of Islamic bonds, according to Turkey’s Capital Markets Board (SPK). The sale would be the first by a state-run Islamic bank, and follows a wider government push to develop the sector in the world’s eighth most populous Muslim nation. No tenor or details of underlying assets were given for the deal, which will be sold to qualified investors. Islamic lender Kuveyt Türk also applied for 1.85 billion lira worth of sukuk. Ziraat Participation Bank started operations in May 2015, with 675 million lira in paid-up capital and plans to have 170 branches and 2,200 staff by the end of 2018.

Islamic bank BLME to acquire SME-focused leasing business

Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME) said it would acquire Renaissance Asset Finance as part of efforts to grow its leasing business. Dubai-listed BLME said in a statement the acquisition would be finalised in early April, without disclosing a deal size. The Islamic lender helped launch Renaissance in 2014 when it provided a financing line of 35 million pounds, with both firms seeking to fill a funding gap for mid-sized companies. Renaissance offers financing solutions including sale and leaseback transactions, with a maximum advance of 2 million pounds.

UPDATE 1-Turkish authorities to sell or liquidate Bank Asya -fund chairman

Turkey plans to sell Islamic lender Bank Asya by the end of May and will liquidate it if a buyer is not found, Sakir Ercan Gul, chairman of the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) that controls the bank said. Gul said that some of the bank's partners have accepted it, some of them have not. The bank will be sold in any case, he added. Last year the government seized the assets of Bank Asya, saying its financial structure and management presented a threat to the financial system, and took over more than 20 companies with ties to Gulen.

Turkish President calls for Islamic banking to reach 25 per cent

Speaking at the launch of the participation banking unit of state-owned Vakibank, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the share of Islamic banking is around five per cent now, but the target was earlier defined to increase this share to 15 per cent by 2025. He stated his opinion that the share should reach 25 per cent instead. In December 2014 Vakifbank’s Board of Directors had authorized the bank to carry out all necessary transactions to obtain financing from Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to pledge capital for the Bank's participation banking project, amounting to $300 million with Turkish Treasury guarantee.

Bank Asya shareholders dismiss fund’s statement on possible sale

A statement from the deposit insurance fund (DIF) that Islamic lender Bank Asya would either be sold or liquidated by the end of May has no legal basis and its shareholders will never agree to such forced maneuvers, Süleyman Ta?ba?, a lawyer for Bank Asya shareholders said. Selling the bank is not legally possible according to banking law, he explained, adding that the bank's equity capital ratio is still strong; it has TL 1.35 billion in equities and another TL 1.4 billion deposited with the central bank. Plus, the shareholders still hold ownership. Ta?ba? criticized DIF's irresponsible statements, adding that all parties should respect the judicial process that is currently under way with regards to the bank's future.

European bank arranges financing for Central Anatolian hospital

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has announced it is co-financing the development of a 318 million-euro high-tech hospital in Konya, a city in Turkey’s central Anatolian region. As part of a comprehensive long-term financial package, the EBRD has arranged a 147.5-million-euro-of syndicated loan under its A/B loan structure, with 67.5 million euros for the Bank’s own account and 80 million euros of syndicated to UniCredit Bank Austria AG and Siemens Financial Services. The Black Sea Trade and Development Bank and the Islamic Development Bank are providing parallel financing of 50 million euros and 67.5 million euros respectively.

Turkey could become interest-free financial hub, Al Baraka Banking CEO says

Adnan Ahmed Yousif, the head of Al Baraka Banking Group, said Turkey, and especially Istanbul, had the potential to become a hub for financial services. Yousif, who is the president and CEO of the Bahrain-based group, said Turkish economic administrators were aiming to broaden the services offered to customers, with special focus on participation banks. He also said Turkey's huge potential might facilitate the interest of investors from the Gulf countries as well as create new opportunities for the recently expanding sukuk market in Turkey.Turkey and especially Istanbul, is very close to participation banking markets, such as the GCC and Europe.

A pioneering spirit

Euris Group wants to develop Islamic Finance in Europe. The firm designed a banking concept and is now promoting its project, a Shari'ah compliant private bank in Luxembourg. The European market remains fragmented and far from comprehensive. To fill the gap, it's necessary to build a pure player, i.e. a fully fledged Islamic bank in the Eurozone. From there, a lot will remain to be done: entering the retail and commercial banking space, providing Takaful solutions to European customers and exploring the relevant investment banking opportunities, especially when it comes to European Sukuk. Euris Group chose Luxembourg because it occupies a central position at the heart of the Eurozone.

BoE to set up Shari'a-compliant facilities for Islamic banks

A new Bank of England consultation, which closes on 29 April, builds on a feasibility study carried out last year and sets out two possible deposit facilities, and two possible liquidity insurance models. The idea behind the proposals is to help firms that are prevented by Shari’a law from undertaking activities involving interest to manage fluctuating liquidity demands and ride out periods of particular stress. Although the consultation sets out options for both Shari’a compliant deposit facilities and liquidity insurance, the Bank of England said that it was prioritising the former as the area of greatest demand. Following the consultation and further analysis, it will decide whether any of the proposals are feasible, it said.

QInvest/Crescent Capital complete first mezzanine financing for Turkish alternative energy

There are a growing number of transactions in the Turkish market that are financed by GCC institutions; and the Gulf States are steadily rising investors in Turkey. Among the lastest crop of deals, Qatar’s QInvest has provided a five year $30m murabaha mezzanine finance facility for Turkish private equity firm Crescent Capital to fund its acquisition of a 100% stake in Akocak HPP, an operational 81 MW hydro-electric power plant in Turkey. QInvest has structured and invested in the transaction. The deal also shows that traditional project finance structures are giving way to alternative financing structures, with Islamic finance showing potential for further growth in the funding of capital goods projects.

US sends mixed message to Europe on Iran sanctions

Since reaching the nuclear agreement that lifted economic sanctions on Iran, President Barack Obama has pledged to continue to punish foreign companies that do business with the regime’s powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. In theory, this will chill European investment in Iran because the IRGC, along with its front businesses, controls major portions of Iran’s economy in vital sectors such as oil, construction and banking. But despite recent reports of billions of dollars worth of new European investment in Iran, the US Treasury Department has seen no evidence that European companies are conducting transactions with the IRGC. Many sanctions experts question whether this is really possible.

The Nottingham's finance director wins top accolade at British Muslim Awards

Ashraf Piranie, deputy chief executive and finance director at The Nottingham, has received an accolade for his contribution to finance and banking at the British Muslim Awards. Mr Piranie joined the board of The Nottingham in 2007 and was previously the finance director and joint managing director at the Islamic Bank of Britain and director of finance at Alliance & Leicester Plc. One of his most notable achievements was the proactive part he played in introducing Islamic finance legislation to the UK's Finance Acts. He continues to play an important role on UK banking regulation and since 2013 has been a member of the PRA's Practitioner Panel representing the building society sector.

La CENF de l'Université Paris 1 en partenariat avec LabEx RéFi organisent une table ronde sur "La religion dans la finance : risques, marketing et réalités" le 10 février 2016 à 18h à Paris.

La chaire éthique et normes et de la finance (CENF) de l'Université Paris 1 en partenariat avec le laboratoire d'excellence sur la régulation financière (LabEx RéFi) organisent une table ronde sur "La religion dans la finance : risques, marketing et réalités" le 10 février 2016 à 18h. Cet évènement aura lieu dans la salle 1 du Centre Panthéon (12 place du Panthéon) et accueillera Frédéric Baule (consultant indépendant), Nicolas Hardy (Analyste financier, Standard & Poor´s Ratings Services) ainsi que Edouard Fernandez-Bollo (autorité de contrôle prudentiel et de résolution) et sera modérée par Pierre-Charles Pradier (Paris 1).

KFH-Turkey issues capital boosting $350m sukuk

Kuwait Finance House Turkey (KFH-Turkey) issued Tier 2 capital-boosting sukuk worth $350 million to support its capital situation. The bank has set the yield at 7.9 percent for 10-year tenure. The sukuk will be listed on the Irish Stock Exchange for trading. The credit rating agency "Fitch" assigned an expected rating of BBB- to this tier 2 Basel III-complaint issue. The bank targets boosting its capital adequacy ratio so it can grow and enhance its presence in the international markets, said CEO- KFH -Capital Abdulaziz Nasser Al-Marzouq. KFH -Turkey mandated international banks and financial institutions led by KFH -Capital as a global coordinator, manager and syndicator, in addition to other lead managers and syndicators which are HSBC, Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB), Nour Bank, QInvest Investment Bank, Emirates NBD, and KAMCO Investment Company.

The rise and rise of Islamic finance law

Contrary to popular opinion, Sharia law is not taking over Britain. It is seen as a rule of law that contributes to the way Muslims live. Most importantly, the principles of Islamic finance encourage fairness. The presence of the likes of Allen & Overy, Hogan Lovells and Norton Rose Fulbright shows how far Islamic finance has come. The unwavering investment that has occurred over the Middle East, with offices springing up in Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Kuwait is a testament to firms taking the Islamic practice seriously. Trainees can develop leadership skills by undertaking research and ascertaining what works for clients.

The Sharia-run Government buildings where alcohol is BANNED thanks to Islamic finance deal

The central London offices must be run in line with Islamic principles because of a deal with rich Middle Eastern investors. They demanded the buildings be audited by Muslim scholars and subject to special rules in exchange for lending the Government £200million. The deal currently only covers three buildings - Richmond House, Wellington House and a property on Whitehall - and is almost unheard of outside of the Middle East. But Treasury officials hope hundreds of Western companies will follow their lead and turn over buildings to Islamic financiers in similar deals. The exact restrictions under which the buildings must be run which were not spelled out in the text of the deal struck with overseas investors.

Kuwait Finance House says to set up Islamic Turkish funds firm

Kuwait Finance House (KFH) will set up a sharia-compliant asset management unit under its Turkish bank branch, the lender said on Monday. Kuwait Finance House Turk will establish five sharia-compliant investment funds and offer other investment services under KT Portfoy, the new unit, KFH said in a bourse statement. The establishment of the new firm is conditional on approval from Turkey's capital market authority. KFH's chief executive in January said it would issue Islamic bonds to boost capital reserves at its subsidiary bank in Turkey, even as it looks to restructure its global assets.

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