The Gulf Investment Corporation (GIC), following its meeting in Riyadh, today announced that its board had ratified the agreements signed between the concerned parties on the acquisition of the Saudi International Bank (SIB) by GIC's wholly-owned subsidiary, Gulf International Bank (GIB). GIC will continue to be the majority shareholder in GIB, holding over 70 percent of the shares. The remaining shares will be owned by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) and the international finance firm JP Morgan. Commenting on the impact of this move, current GIC chairman Ibrahim Abdulkarim stated that GIB will be better placed to serve the evolving banking needs of its GCC customer base and to play an active role in the development of capital markets in the Gulf region.
GIC's total assets increased to U.S. $ 13.5 billion in 1998, an increase of 11.6 percent from U.S. $ 12.1 billion the previous year. GIC announced a net profit of U.S. $ 97.1 million, and a dividend for shareholders of U.S. $ 52.5 million. After incorporating the declared dividend the corporation's shareholder equity is U.S. $ 1.17 billion. During 1998, GIC made six new direct investments in the Gulf region, mainly in companies intending to export a substantial portion of their products, thereby helping the economy of their host country. The GUC is the first financial institution to be established under the auspices of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). It is headquartered in Kuwait, and through its Bahrain-based banking subsidiary, Gulf International Bank (GIB), has offices in Abu Dhabi, Beirut, London, New York and Singapore.