CAIRO/DUBAI – First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) plans to restart talks to buy the Egyptian business of Lebanon’s Bank Audi , two sources familiar with the matter said.
FAB, the United Arab Emirates’ biggest lender, will have an internal meeting this week to decide on a way to resume negotiations and put in a final bid, said one of the sources, declining to be named as the matter is not public.
A second source said FAB planned to restart negotiations within two weeks.
FAB declined to comment. Bank Audi did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
FAB put talks on hold in May due to difficult market conditions triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.
A source familiar with the matter said then that the deal was worth around $700 million..
Gulf lenders are keen to expand their market share in Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous country. Some Lebanese lenders are trying to divest non-core assets to fulfil a requirement from Lebanon’s central bank to increase their equity.
Emirates NBD, Dubai’s largest lender, is currently in talks to buy the Egyptian unit of Lebanon’s Blom Bank.