Qatar Very first Bank to list shares in 2016, launches private banking

DOHA Dec 6 Qatar First Bank (QFB) plans to list its shares on the Qatar exchange as early as the 1st quarter of 2016, the chairman of the sharia-compliant monetary institution mentioned on Sunday.

“We hope by the end of the 1st quarter of subsequent year that we will be ready to list. Things are on the right track,” Abdulla al-Marri told journalists at a press conference in Doha.

The firm has extended been linked with a flotation, in what would be only the second new listing in Qatar since 2010, though QFB would only place its shares onto the bourse to trade and would raise no new income from the event.

Traditionally focused on wealth and asset management and private equity, targeting investments in power, genuine estate and financial solutions across the Middle East and Africa, QFB was also launching a private banking service, it stated on Sunday.

The move was not related to issues in its private equity operate or financial downturn in the Gulf Arab state, according to the bank’s chief executive.

“We are supplying private banking as a service as of right now. We are not shifting away from private equity, we are constructing on it,” stated Ziad Makkawi, the veteran banker who was appointed to the function in July.

Makkawi described the banking environment in the Gulf as “challenging” and said that investors had been behaving cautiously at a time of low oil rates and a liquidity crunch.

“The investment climate is not going to be as hot or as bullish as when oil prices had been at one hundred dollars a barrel. Men and women are searching for a bit far more certainty and are staying away from speculative sorts of investments,” he stated. (Reporting by Tom Finn Editing by Mark Potter)