Oman’s Bank Nizwa Sees First Profit In 2014

Omani Bank Nizwa sees a maiden profit two and a half years after the start of its operation planned next month, its chief executive officer said.

“We aim to make our first profit in 2014 though we would like to make it happen sooner in the first year of our operation but that may not be possible,- Jamil Al Jaroudi, chief executive officer of Bank Nizwa said.

He added that the bank’s new board will be elected in a shareholders’ meeting planned on July 31.

“We will start our operation two weeks after that with three branches, in Nizwa, Sohar and Muscat. Eighteen months after the start of our operation, we hope to open about seven branches nationwide,- Jaroudi said.

Bank Nizwa, the Sultanate’s first Islamic bank, attracted RO681 million ($1.77 billion) of bids in its initial public offering, 11 times the sum it planned to raise, signaling strong interest from investors. Jaroudi said that over-subscription of the bank’s IPO was “a good indication- and he hoped the funds will be used by customers as deposits. “It shows that we are well placed and there’s a healthy appetite for a fully fledged Islamic bank in Oman,- the Bank Nizwa’s CEO told Times of Oman.

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