Beltone Financial is not interested in acquiring Blom Bank Egypt: Sawiris

Beltone Financial, Orascom Investment Holding’s non banking financial arm, is not interested in attaining Blom Bank Egypt, according to OIH Chairman Naguib Sawaris

He told Hapi Journal that OIH — post-horizontal demerger —has not begun steps towards entering the banking sector.

The Lebanese bank had earlier this year announced it was seeking to sell its Egypt assets as its home country suffers its worst economic crisis in decades.

Bahrain’s Arab Banking Corporation (Bank ABC), Emirates NBD, First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) and an unnamed NBFS firm are all in the race to acquire the bank’s assets.

BLOM Bank Egypt has 41 branches and a paid-up capital of 2 billion Egyptian pounds ($127 million), according to the Lebanese bank’s website.

Sawiris ruled out moving towards owning a bank in Africa during the current stage, a step that has been on table some time ago.

The FRA approved last week OIH’s demerger, allowing the group to become two separate companies.

Orascom Financial Holding (OFH) and OIH were created from the agreement that would see the former take control of the company’s financial services operations including a 74.5 percent  stake in Beltone Financial and 28.8 percent of Sarwa Capital.

The latter would retain all of its investments in its eight subsidiaries, including Orascom Telecom Ventures, O Capital, and Orascom Pyramids, along with its sister Cheo Joint Venture Technology company