DUBAI (Reuters) - Dubai Islamic Bank DISB.DU (DIB), the largest Islamic bank in the United Arab Emirates, has sold its stake in Jordan Dubai Islamic Bank, it said on Wednesday, as it chases growth in fledgeling Islamic banking markets.
The Jordanian bank has quadrupled in size over the past five years, with assets of more than $1.1 billion and a network of 21 branches, DIB said in an investor presentation, and proceeds from the stake sale will be redeployed to markets where Islamic banking is in the early stages of growth.
DIB held 20.8 percent in Jordan Dubai Islamic Bank through a 40 percent shareholding in MESC Investments, which has sold the stake to Jordan-based Bank Al Etihad UBSI.AM and Etihad Islamic Investment Company, according to a statement from DIB, which invested in Jordan in 2008.
The value of the sale was not disclosed, but DIB will look to invest the money in markets including Pakistan, Indonesia and East African countries, according to another investor presentation, adding that a key strategy of its overseas growth is to be an “active player” in any entity in which it is invested.
Indonesia and Pakistan together account for about a quarter of the world’s Muslim population, while Muslims make up about 10 percent of the 44 million-strong Kenyan population.
DIB has had a presence in Pakistan since 2006 and also holds a 39.6 percent stake in Indonesia’s Bank Panin Syariah.
In Kenya, DIB is awaiting a license from the central bank to begin operating.
Editing by Louise Heavens and David Goodman