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Monday, December 15, 2008

Best Islamic Financial Institution in France (Global Finance) : BNP Paribas

BNP Paribas is a European leader in banking and financial services, with a significant and growing presence in the United States and leading positions in Asia. The Group has one of the largest international banking networks, a presence in over 85 countries and 171,200 employees including: 131,000 in Europe - among whom 19,600 in Italy and 64,000 in France and in the Overseas Departments; 15,000 in North America and 10,000 in Asia.

With a long standing presence in the region, BNP Paribas strengthens its proximity with local clients by creating dedicated private banking teams in each of its branches in the Middle East: Barhain, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Lebanon. BNP Paribas Private Banking therefore increases its coverage in the region, by opening new branches in Kuwait and in Riyadh.

BNP Paribas Private Banking develops a dedicated offer for the Middle East clients, and proposes them a direct access to local equities and local funds. The advisory desks established in Bahrain and in Lebanon give access to a highly specialised analysis of the local market. The bank has also developed an Islamic range of products either internally made or selected through an open architecture approach.

This new set-up fully dedicated to private banking activities also provides the opportunity to invest in the main European financial centres such as Geneva, Luxembourg, London and Paris. The Middle East clients have access to the full private banking products and services range, and can benefit from the private banking expertise, in wealth management or estate planning. The “Solution Centre”, based in Geneva, offers flexible approach and tailor-maid solutions for the Ultra High Networth Individuals.

In 2006, BNP Paribas Private Banking will continue to strengthen its teams in the region, confirming the key importance of the Middle East region for BNP Paribas.
BNP Paribas Private Banking has targeted to double its asset under management from USD 5 to 10 bn within 3 years.

BNP Paribas has completed the second largest bond issue in Saudi Arabia for Saad Trading Contracting and Financial Services Company (STCFSC). BNP Paribas acted as sole bookrunner for this USD 650 million, 5-year bond issue, in Sukuk format (meaning the issue complies with the investment principles of Islamic law). This transaction is the first Sukuk issued in Saudi Arabia for a private business and illustrates the growing interest in the Sukuk market.

Saad Group has been rated BBB+ (S&P). STCFSC is one of the two principal companies of the group. Its main activities include construction, real estate and healthcare. STCFSC is a key investor in various sectors, particularly in the Saudi and international banking sector. For several years, BNP Paribas has been one of its strategic partners in investment banking.

The orderbook achieved USD 1 billion within two days, double the targeted size of USD 500 million. European investors took the largest amount with 46%, significant orders also came from the Middle East and from Asia.

BNP Paribas Investment Partners (“BNPP IP”) and The Saudi Investment Bank (“SAIB”) have signed today a strategic partnership in asset management in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Under the terms of the agreement, BNPP IP, through the holding company BNP PAM Group, will buy a 25% stake in SAIB Asset Management Company (“SAIB AMC”), the newly formed subsidiary of SAIB. The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals, and is expected to be completed within a few months. The Joint Venture will then be renamed SAIB BNP Paribas Asset Management.

SAIB has successfully developed a significant presence in asset management in the Kingdom, putting forward its particularly strong expertise in Saudi and GCC equities and in Islamic funds. With 2, 2 billion USD of assets under management, SAIB Asset Management Company provides a wide range of investment management products to a variety of corporate and retail investors.

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