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United Gulf Bank of Bahrain (UGB), the investment banking arm and subsidiary of Kuwait Projects Company (Kipco), has successfully closed a US$65mn three-year syndicated murabaha facility marking its first ever medium-term Islamic facility. 

The facility for purchasing and selling of certain commodities listed on the London Metal Exchange is priced to give an annual profit margin of 1% above Libor. The transaction, well received by a number of well-recognised regional and global financial institutions, was signed on December 9, 2004.
Calyon Corporate and Investment Bank and Malayan Banking Berhad (Maybank) acted as mandated managers, while The Arab Investment Company (TAIC), Bank fr Arbeit und Wirtschaft Aktiengesellschaft (Bawag), and Doha Bank acted as joint lead managers to the facility.

Commenting on the issue, UGB chief executive officer William Khouri says: “We are pleased to be the first investment bank to raise a three-year syndicated murabaha facility. This unique structure has attracted banks from Europe, the Far East and the Middle East and will further enhance the funding profile of the bank.”

UGB manages a diversified portfolio of investments in wealth and asset management, commercial banking, real estate, telecommunications, private equity and quoted securities.

UGB and its subsidiary Kipco Asset Management Company (Kamco) have a proven track record of successful investment banking transactions including corporate finance advisory, new issue placement and underwriting, mergers and acquisitions, bond issuance and investment product structuring and placement. Assets under management exceed US$4bn.

Kipco, with assets of more than US$10bn under management or control, is one of the leading diversified holding companies in the Middle East and North Africa and a major regional force in financial services and media & technology, with further interests in real estate and industry. The largest private sector company in Kuwait, Kipco employs more than 10,000 people internationally and its shares are the most actively traded on the Kuwait Stock Exchange.