New chairmen for two Dubai banks

His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum 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 replaced Ahmed Humaid Al Tayer as the head of Emirates NBD.

Millionaires want managers to solve complex problems

Compared to the pre-crisis period, when the clients were more heavily focused on chasing returns, now the demand is for advisers to help HNW clients to manage the complex mix of goals, primarily wealth preservation.
The World Wealth Report observed that the world's HNWIs expanded in population and wealth in 2010, surpassing 2007 pre-crisis levels in nearly every region.

ALAFCO signs $2.7b deal for 30 A320neo

ALAFCO announced a $2.7 billion deal to buy 30 Airbus A320neo.
The aircraft leasing firm signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the 49th Paris Air Show in Le Bourget.
ALAFCO already ordered 26 A320s of which 25 have been delivered. Including this order, now ALAFCO’s total order for Airbus single aisle aircraft has reached 56.

Bahrain sukuk beat Dubai as emergency lifted

Bahrain decided to end the three-month state of emergency and therefore the confidence in the island nation’s Islamic bonds is being restored.
The notes returned 4 percent this quarter, compared with 3.2 percent for sukuk in Dubai, 2.5 percent for Malaysia and 1.7 percent in Indonesia.
Yields on Bahrain sukuk climbed to 4.45 percent on March 15, the highest level in a year.

Dubai's Nakheel pays $1.36bn to trade creditors

Nakheel stated that it has paid AED5bn ($1.36bn) in overdue payments to its trade creditors.
Through the restructuring proposal trade creditors will receive repayment through 40 percent cash and 60 percent in the form of an Islamic bond, or sukuk.

CSR more important than ever for businesses: Dubai Chamber

Taking into consideration the increasingly shaped by a company’s reputation and impact on the environment consumers choise, the need to adopt sustainable business practices is more important than ever.
The Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Sustainability Network has the goal to advance corporate social responsibility, or CSR, across the UAE by bringing together top business executives to network, share experience and demonstrate CSR leadership.
The pressure to act is coming from stakeholders, employees, customers, governments, investors, the media, and society in general.

Could Middle East financial centers pose threat to leader London?

It seems that inspite the fact that London is retaining its top spot as the leading global financial center in 2011, European frontrunners are being challenged by fast developing nations in the Middle East.
Of the four Middle Eastern centers in the GFCI, Dubai has maintained a lead since the index first began in 2007. Qatar is only 8 points behind Dubai having been 135 points behind in the second GFCI in 2007.
The latest GFCI shows that Bahrain and Riyadh are still way behind two Middle Eastern leaders Dubai and Qatar.

Dubai Debt Pile In 2012

Investors have been closely watching Dubai's move ver since Dubai World defaulted on that grim Eid weekend of November 25, 2009.
Dubai World has made up with its creditors and put into place a robust debt plan. Although it makes obvious changes, the markets have not forgiven Dubai.
According to CMA Datavision, Dubai remained among the 10 most likely countries (or city states) to default.

Qatar's Islamic lenders may struggle to lure deposits

It appears that after only four months after Qatar's controversial order for conventional banks to close their Islamic units, the decision may be proving less positive than expected for purely Islamic lenders.
The main problem is the fact that many customers remain unconvinced of the advantages of moving away from deposit accounts managed by non-Islamic institutions and are instead staying loyal to conventional lenders.

HSBC sees strong pipeline for Islamic bonds in 2011

HSBC is searching for mandates for Islamic bond issuance in 2011 that are above pre-crisis levels, with at least one more sukuk expected to come to market before mid-July.
Mohammed Dawood, managing director of global capital financing at HSBC, stated that debt capital markets have experienced a comeback in recent months, as the cost of borrowing came down and liquidity levels for Islamic bonds reached the highest level they have seen been in four or five years.

Vinson & Elkins appoints Ayman A. Khaleq Managing Partner, Middle East

Ayman A. Khaleq is the new managing partner of the international law firm Vinson & Elkins LLP's Middle East offices in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Riyadh.
Khaleq’s practice focuses on structured finance and debt capital markets transactions with a particular emphasis on the structuring and documentation of Islamic finance and investment products.

Dubai’s Hawkamah Says It May Issue Sukuk Template This Year

Hawkamah Institute for Corporate Governance will launch a template for sukuk ijarah. The purpose is to cut the cost of issuing the debt and strengthen the Islamic finance business. Thi statement comes from Nasser Saidi, the executive director.
The institute expects to release the document by year-end.

Islamic trusts could revive Gulf property market

The real estate bust in 2008 left investors ith half-finished projects sitting in the desert sun and losses that were unlikely to be recovered.
But it appears that the emergence of Islamic real estate investment trusts (REIT) in the Middle East could help these investors. Islamic REITS differ from their conventional counterparts by banning investment in any assets that pay interest or conduct business in any forbidden industry, like gambling, alcohol or adult entertainment.
Beside the fact that it is providing an alternative investment in the Gulf Islamic finance industry it could also inject more transparency and regulation in a property sector plagued by unrealistic expectations of returns and occasionally murky dealings.

Saudi hyper-rich leave rest in the dust

A new study reveals that for its population, Saudi Arabia has the highest proportion of "hyper-rich" households in the world. The study also reveals the fact that Dubai's financial services industry is reaping rewards from wealthy investors from Saudi Arabia.
Kuwait and the UAE were among the top 10 countries worldwide on the number of millionaires per capital.

GFH reports Q1 profit of $11.9 million

Gulf Finance House (GFH) swung to a first-quarter (Q1) net profit helped by aggressive cost cutting and the reversal of a bonus scheme granted in 2008. GFH, which is aiming to raise 500 million US dollars in new capital, said net profit for the quarter ended March 31 was $11.9 million, compared with a net loss of $7.5 million a year earlier.
The bank expects continued interest from shareholders and investors' throughout 2011 to support its business growth and strengthen its position in the market also in the future.

Dubai bond most susceptible to Europe woes: Islamic finance

Last week Dubai’s Islamic bonds had the smallest results in six months.
The rate fell to a record low of 4.6 percent on May 19. The average yield of Gulf sukuk was unchanged last week at 4.55 percent altough the yields on Bahrain’s government bond dropped. It couldn't have been a more poorly moment because the investors reckoned on the Emirates as being a safe area.

HSBC Middle East eyeing Islamic bond issue - IFR

It seems that HSBC Middle East is going to meet investors in Asia and Europe for a potential sukuk issue. The meetings will take place in Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong and London.

Socially responsible investments yield dividends

The general view of the fact that "returns are usually sacrificed in the name of doing good" is in process of being changed by a report titled Impact Investing in Emerging Markets, by the consultancy Responsible Research.
The report enlightened the fact that this return is comparable with, if not better than, expectations on emerging market indexes globally.
WillowTree Impact Investors, a private equity company that recently launched in Dubai, tries to take advantage of the situation by beliving that it is the first private equity company in Dubai that invests in a socially responsible manner.

Saudi Electricity picks Deutsche, HSBC for potential dollar bond

According to two bank sources, HSBC Holdings and Deutsche Bank were picked for a potential dollar-denominated bond issue by Saudi Electricity Co.
They couldn't say when this will happen.

Emirates Islamic Bank chief executive resigns

Ebrahim Fayez Al Shamsi, the chief executive of Emirates Islamic Bank, has resigned. His replacement will be deputy chief executive Abdullah Showaiter. Faisal Aqil, general manager of retail banking, will be the new deputy CEO.
Emirates Islamic and ENBD didn't want to comment.

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