March 19, 2018 / 3:24 PM / in 10 months

Kuwait Finance House to decide on Aref stake by end of Q2

KUWAIT, March 19 (Reuters) - Kuwait Finance House (KFH) will make a decision by the end of the second quarter on the future of its stake in affiliate Aref Investment Group, the group chief executive of the Islamic lender said on Monday.

The bank was considering selling its stake in the company, CEO Mazin Saad Al-Nahedh said at the bank’s annual general meeting.

Aref is a diversified investment company that is 53 percent owned by KFH and has capital of 22.9 million dinars ($76.4 million), according to the bank’s website.

The bank, which reported flat fourth-quarter net profit, expects net profit to grow by a double-digit percentage this year, he said at a news conference after the meeting without elaborating.

KFH had said last week that it will divide the ownership structure of its Turkish asset management business between local and Kuwaiti units as the Islamic lender continues to build on its Turkey franchise.

Speaking at Monday’s press conference, Nahedh said that KFH’s Turkish business was in talks to participate in financing a 150 million euro ($184.8 million) loan for the construction of a large project in Turkey but gave no further details. ($1 = 0.2998 Kuwaiti dinars) ($1 = 0.8119 euros)

Reporting by Ahmed Hagagy Writing by Tom Arnold Editing by David Goodman

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