ITHMAAR HOLDING REPORTS SECOND QUARTER RESULTS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 10 August 2017 – Ithmaar Holding BSC (formerly Ithmaar Bank BSC) (Ithmaar) reported today (ed note: 10/08/17) a net loss of US$1.59 million for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017, compared to a net profit of US$11.96 million for the same period last year.
Net loss attributable to equity holders for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017 was US$9.25 million, compared to a net profit of US$4.4 million reported for the same period last year. This included a net loss of US$7.38 million for the three-month period ended 30 June 2017, compared to a net profit of US$7.14 million for the same period last year. Net loss attributable to equity holders for the three-month period ended 30 June 2017 was US$9.82 million, compared to a net profit of US$3.19 million reported for the same period last year.
The announcement, by Ithmaar Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Amr Al Faisal, follows the review and approval, by the Board of Directors, of Ithmaar’s consolidated financial results for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that Ithmaar’s half-year financial results show that the core business continued to grow in 2017,” said HRH Prince Amr. “Although net income, before provision for impairment and overseas taxation, dropped to US$29.83 million for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017, from US$36.67 million for the same period last year, this loss was mainly due to unrealized foreign exchange losses of US$12.5 million, overall income from our core business grew significantly during the same period. This is evident from the increased income from murabaha and other financing which grew by 7.7 percent to US$72.08 million for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017, compared to US$66.9 million for the same period last year, as well as the higher share on income from unrestricted investment accounts as a Mudarib which grew 60.8 percent during the first half of this year to US$34.39 million, compared to US$21.38 million for the same period last year. This is, mainly, a result of the 75 new Islamic retail branches that were opened by Faysal Bank Limited in Pakistan last year,” he said.
Ithmaar Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said the focus remains firmly on growing the core retail banking business.
“I am pleased to report that the balance sheet is stable and continues to grow,” said Abdul Rahim. “Total assets stood at US$8.72 billion as at 30 June 2017, a 4.5 percent increase compared to US$8.34 billion as at 31 December 2016, and a 2.9 percent increase compared to US$8.47 billion as at 30 June 2016,” he said.
“Customer current accounts also increased to US$1.73 billion as at 30 June 2017, a 9.6 percent

increase compared to US$1.58 billion as at 31 December 2016, and a 15.5 percent increase compared to US$1.5 billion as at 30 June 2016,” said Abdul Rahim. “The equity of unrestricted investment accountholders, at US$2.78 billion as at 30 June 2017, increased by 0.4 percent compared to US$2.77 billion as at 31 December 2016, and by a significant 7.2 percent compared to US$2.59 billion as 30 June 2016,” he said.

ITHMAAR BANK REPORTS CONTINUED PROFITS FOR 2017

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 13 August 2017 – Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (c), a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ithmaar Holding, reported today (ed note: 13/08/17) a net profit of BHD4.38 million for the first half of 2017. The net profit attributable to equity holders of the Bank for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017 was BHD1.54 million.
The announcement, by Ithmaar Bank Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Amr Al Faisal, follows the review and approval, by the Board of Directors, of the Bank’s consolidated financial results for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017. These are the Bank’s first half-year results since the successful completion in January this year of a planned reorganisation and the formal commencement of the new group structure and hence there are no comparatives.
“On behalf of the Ithmaar Bank Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that the Bank continues to report profits in 2017,” said HRH Prince Amr. “In the three-month period ended 30 June 2017, Ithmaar Bank reported a net profit of BHD1.3 million, with the net profit attributable to equity holders of the Bank for the period being BHD0.4 million,” he said.
“Ithmaar Bank’s half-year financial results show that the Bank is reporting continued profits and stable income for the year,” said HRH Prince Amr. “In the first half of 2017, the Bank recorded a net income, before provisions for impairment and overseas taxation, of BHD12.71 million, including BHD6.22 million for the three-month period ended 30 June 2017. The Bank recorded a total income for the first half of the year of BD76.44 million, including BD39.23 million for the three-month period ended 30 June 2017,” he said.
Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said that efforts to continuously develop the Bank’s products and services, while also improving its customer service offerings and growing closer to its customers, were clearly paying off.
“Ithmaar Bank’s half-year financial results show that we are, indeed, on the right track as we work towards our shared vision of becoming one of the region’s premier Islamic retail banks,” said Abdul Rahim. “The results show that the Bank’s total assets grew by 5 percent over the past three months and stand at BHD3.26 billion as at 30 June 2017, up from BHD3.11 billion as at 31 March 2017. Accordingly, the equity of unrestricted investment accountholders grew by 4.8 percent during the same period to stand at BHD1.05 billion as at 30 June 2017, up from BHD0.99 billion as at 31 March 2017,” he said.
“This growth is, in a large part, a result of the unwavering focus on developing our core retail banking business,” said Abdul Rahim. “Ithmaar Bank operates one of the largest retail banking networks in Bahrain, and is widely recognised as one of the pioneer, most innovative Islamic banks in the region. We are confident that we will continue to build on this legacy by listening closely, and responding quickly, to our customers,” he said. “The Bank’s subsidiary, Faysal Bank Limited in Pakistan, opened 75 Islamic branches during 2016 as part of its branch expansion plan and has 50 Islamic branches planned for 2017, out of which 10 have been opened till 30 June 2017, making the number of total Islamic branches as 156 out of total of 364 branches,” he said
In May, for example, Ithmaar Bank introduced a new Sharia-compliant corporate credit card with Mastercard. The Card, which was tailored to meet the specific requirements of corporate customers, as well as business owners and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) customers, was developed a result of the Bank’s commitment to listening to, and delivering on, customer expectations. The corporate card allows for a one-stop payment solution which, ultimately, creates what could be the most convenient business payment solution for businesses.
In April, Ithmaar Bank became one of the first banks in Bahrain to be certified to the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) v3.2, a prestigious, internationally-celebrated payment security certification that puts the Bank on par with some of the best in the world. The PCI-DSS is a data security standard for organizations that handle branded payment cards from the major card schemes. The PCI Standard is mandated by the card brands and administered by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council. Ithmaar Bank earned the certification after successfully completing a comprehensive audit and demonstrating compliance to one of the most stringent and most coveted security standards in the world.
Earlier this month, Ithmaar Bank announced that it was honoured at a regional conference for its continuous support of the community and presented with the Best Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Award for an Islamic Bank 2017 award in recognition of its various initiatives. The award was presented at the CSR Conference and Award for Islamic Banks which was held in Bahrain and attended by senior bankers, CSR experts and representatives of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) as well as government and banking and finance officials both from Bahrain, as well from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman, Jordan, Lebanon, Sudan, and the Republic of Djibouti.

ITHMAAR BANK EARNS CSR AWARD, CEO EARNS ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE IN CSR AWARD

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 7 August 2017 – Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail Bank, was honoured at a regional conference for its continuous support of the community and presented with the Best Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Award for an Islamic Bank 2017 in recognition of its various initiatives. Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, was also honoured at the event and presented with the Academic Excellence in CSR Award.
The awards were presented to Abdul Rahim by the Chairman of the Bahrain Association of Banks and the International Ambassador for CSR, Adnan Yousif, at the CSR Conference and Award for Islamic Banks, which was held in Bahrain. At the event, Abdul Rahim was thanked for his participation in the conference and his support, as the Ithmaar Bank CEO, for the Bank’s CSR initiatives. The event was attended by senior bankers, CSR experts and representatives of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) as well as government and banking and finance officials both from Bahrain, as well from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman, Jordan, Sudan and the Republic of Djibouti.
Abdul Rahim thanked the organisers and attributed the Bank’s long-standing commitment to the community, as well as its growing success, to the Grace of God, then to the support and guidance of the Ithmaar Bank Board of Directors, led by the Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Amr Al Faisal, as well as to the contributions of the Executive Management team and all the Bank’s employees.
“As a pioneering Islamic retail bank, Ithmaar Bank has long recognised the important role we must play in supporting the community in which we operate,” said Abdul Rahim. “This is a responsibility we have always taken very seriously, and this has helped chart the Bank’s progress and growth over the years,” he said.
“Although we are, of course, deeply grateful for the recognition we receive through these prestigious awards, our support for the community is driven by infinitely more powerful motivation,” said Abdul Rahim. “It is, in fact, one of our key objectives as an Islamic retail bank: to play a real and meaningful role in developing our community, to help those in need and to contribute to our society’s growth and prosperity. It is about who we are as a corporate entity,” he said.
“Ithmaar Bank fulfils its responsibility towards the community by focusing on economic growth, social development and environmental protection,” said Abdul Rahim. “Throughout, we remain committed to applying best practices in corporate governance through the adoption of principles such as integrity, transparency, accountability and a strict adherence to the principles of the Islamic Sharia principles,” he said.
“We set solid foundations based on predetermined criteria that are used in deciding which initiatives we support, and we conduct extensive studies to ensure that any funds we disburse

are used to achieve specific objectives that are in line with the Bank’s CSR strategy,” said Abdul Rahim. “The Bank’s CSR strategy aims to provide financial and moral support to a number of sectors, such as providing financial support for the needy and providing education and training opportunities for Bahrainis from all sectors, including empowering women to play bigger roles in the community and supporting people with special needs. The Bank also focuses on supporting sports and social activities as well as on supporting hospitals and medical centres,” he said.
“As an Islamic retail bank, Ithmaar Bank we did not overlook the significant role we must play in spreading Islam by supporting centres that aim to spread awareness of the Holy Quran through programmes that teach Islamic principles, print the Holy Qurans, and memorise it as a part of the nation-wide Quran reader programme,” said Abdul Rahim. “Over the past 10 years, Ithmaar has also sponsored a number of distinguished academics from all over the Islamic world to obtain postgraduate degrees from the United Kingdom,” he said.
“We also play an important role in providing ongoing training to a large number of undergraduate students in Bahrain to prepare them for entering the banking sector,” said Abdul Rahim. “Ithmaar does not neglect the important role women play in all areas, and the Bank continues to supports initiatives and programmes that help empower women,” he said.
“The Bank also supports the Bahraini community by offering innovative products such as the Qard Hassan, during the Holy month of Ramadan where customers are able to get financing with zero profit rate,” said Abdul Rahim. “We also conducted a recycling project which included educating our employees and the community on how to recycle paper and plastic,” he said.
In December 2016, Ithmaar Bank was singled out from among the world’s Islamic banks for a prestigious international award in recognition of its CSR initiatives and its Financial Disclosure. The independent award was presented at the World Islamic Banking Conference (WIBC) in Bahrain, a high-profile event that was attended by leading international banking experts and is widely recognised as one of the most important events on the world Islamic banking calendar.
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ITHMAAR BANK EARNS PRESTIGIOUS PAYMENT SECURITY CERTIFICATION

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 23 July 2017 – Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, earned a prestigious, internationally-celebrated payment security certification that puts the Bank on par with some of the best in the world.
The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) certification was awarded to Ithmaar Bank by SISA Information Security WLL, the Middle East’s leading Qualified Security Assessor. The PCI-DSS is a data security standard for organizations that handle branded payment cards from the major card schemes. The PCI Standard is mandated by the card brands and administered by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council. Ithmaar Bank earned the certification after successfully completing a comprehensive audit and demonstrating compliance to one of the most stringent and most coveted security standards in the world. The certification was awarded on 26 April 2017, making Ithmaar Bank one of the first in Bahrain to be certified in PCI DSS v3.2.
“Maintaining the safety of card data and banking systems should be one of the top priorities in card acquiring and issuing companies,” said SISA Worldwide CEO and Founder, Dharshan Shanthamurthy. “We are glad to know Ithmaar Bank holds the same belief and continues to work hard towards it,” he said.
SISA is confident that Ithmaar Bank will continue to play an important role in driving the Bahrain payment industry towards utilizing top-of-the-line secure payment infrastructure by implementing payment security regulatory and compliance requirements,” said Shanthamurthy. “This great achievement by Ithmaar Bank will set an example for all other Bahrain financial organizations who are currently in the process of implementing PCI security standards, as it is vital to their long-term success,” he said.
“Ithmaar Bank is committed to becoming the region’s premier Islamic retail banks,” said Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim. “To realise this vision, we invest heavily in continuously developing our products and services while also enhancing our customer service offerings. This, in turn, requires us to ensure we provide the highest levels of security to our customers,” he said.
“The importance of security cannot be overstated,” said Abdul Rahim. “It is a commitment we take very seriously, and I am pleased to note that Ithmaar Bank has earned this prestigious certification,” he said.
The PCI Security Standards Council, launched in September 2006 and formed by the major payment card brands like Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and JCB, is a global open body to develop, enhance, disseminate and assist with the understanding of security standards for payment account security and maintains, evolves and promotes the Payment Card Industry Security Standards. PCI-DSS is not a static standard, but an evolving one based on the ever-changing threat landscape worldwide.
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BAHRAINI WOMAN WINS USD100,000 THIMAAR PRIZE

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 15 July 2017 – Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, presented a USD100,000 cash prize to Dalal Mohammed Abdulrahman Buali, a Bahraini mother who won the Thimaar semi-annual grand prize.
The prize, which was received by Dalal’s nephew Yaqoob Ahmed Alatawi on her behalf, was presented by Ithmaar Bank General Manager, Banking Group, Abdul Hakeem Al Mutawa at a ceremony which was held at the Seef Mall and attended by members of Dalal’s family and members of the Ithmaar Bank management team. The ceremony attracted an audience that included new Thimaar customers and mall shoppers.
“I am very happy that my aunt has won the grand prize,” said Alatawi. “She has been saving with Thimaar for a long time, mainly because of the large number of prizes and the many winners who have encouraged her to save with the Bank. She is particularly delighted to win the prize at this specific time, as the prize money will help her continue the house she had started to build,” he said.
“Congratulations to Dalal and her family, as well as all the other Thimaar winners of this month,” said Al Mutawa. “We work hard to improve the Thimaar savings account in line with the Bank’s commitment to listening closely to its customers’ requirements and actively responding to their feedback. As a result, the current Thimaar offering reduced the minimum deposit to BD30, while also increased the number of winners to 4,044, currently the highest in Bahrain,” he said.
In 2017, Thimaar is offering a total of USD3,055,000 in prizes – including USD1,020,000 monthly prizes, USD900,000 loyalty prizes, USD600,000 Eid prizes, USD200,000 semi-annual prizes and USD125,000 national day prizes – to a total of 4,044 winners, including 840 Junior winners.
Every BD30 maintained as an average daily balance qualifies a customer to enter the draws. The more customers save, and the longer they maintain balances in multiples of BD30, the more opportunities they have to win.
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ITHMAAR HOSTS POST GRADUATE STUDENTS FROM MOROCCO

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 21 June 2017 – Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, hosted a delegation of post graduate students from Morocco who were visiting the Kingdom as part of their university programme.
The delegation of Master’s Degree students from the Dauphine University in Casablanca, Morocco, was headed by the University’s Director of the Executive Master Principles and Practices of Islamic Finance, Kader Merbouh. The visit, which was organised by the General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions (CIBAFI), included meetings with various leading organisation in Bahrain.
The delegation choose to visit Bahrain because of its significance as a regional key Islamic financial hub which helps contribute to their mission of establishing Morocco’s first Islamic financial institution. The students, who has specifically requested in-depth information about operational risk and compliance management application in an Islamic bank, attended a detailed presentation, delivered by the Ithmaar Bank Chief Risk Officer, Krishnan Hariharan, on their key area of study.
“As a pioneering Islamic retail Bank, we recognise the important role we must play both in contributing to the development of the region’s Islamic banking and finance industry, and in playing a real and meaningful role in our extended community,” said Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim. “This visit, which was arranged by CIBAFI, is a great example and allowed us to share first hand insight with postgraduate students who are well on their way to becoming the next generation of leaders,” he said.
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ITHMAAR HOSTS SECURITY AWARENESS SESSIONS FOR OFFICE ASSISTANTS AND SECURITY GUARDS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 19 June 2017 – Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, hosted a series of security awareness sessions for office attendants and security guards to help reduce the risks of any gaps in the Bank’s security or the confidentiality of its documents.
The awareness sessions, which were delivered by Ahmed Buqais, Senior Manager at Ithmaar Bank’s Information Technology department, were organised by the Human Resources and the Administration departments and attended by approximately 80 office attendants and security guards. The sessions were organised in recognition of the important role that office attendants and security guards play in the Bank’s continued success.
“Security is everyone’s responsibility, and we can only ever be as strong as our weakest link,” said Buqais. “Every year, all employees, from the most junior to the most senior including the executive management, attend refresher courses to ensure we are all kept up to date with the latest developments. This, in turn, helps minimise risks by keeping us all alert and updated,” he said.
“Ithmaar Bank is committed to the highest standards of excellence in everything we do,” said Ithmaar Bank Head of Human Resources, Enas Rahimi. “Training is one of the key ways in which we work towards achieving this shared objective. In addition to external training courses, we also arrange internal training courses where employees can share their expertise. This approach helps further develop our people, with both the trainer and the trainees developing their professional capabilities. Office attendants and security guards play an important a role in our continued success, as do all the other employees, and we treat them accordingly,” she said.

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ITHMAAR BANK SUPPORTS EMPLOYEES TO EARN PROFESSIONAL CERTIFICATES IN ISLAMIC FINANCE

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 11 June 2017 – Ten employees at Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, who recently earned professional certificates in Islamic finance from the Bahrain Institute of Banking and Finance (BIBF) were honoured at a ceremony hosted by the BIBF and attended by Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, Assistant General Manager, Head of Retail Banking, Mohammed Janahi, Executive Senior Manager, Head of Commercial and Financial Institutions, Abdulla Talib and employees from the Human Resources Department.
The employees, from various departments including Commercial and Financial Institutions, Retail Banking, Product Development and Management, and Compliance & Anti Money Laundering had successfully completed professional training programme at the BIBF and earned the Advanced Diploma in Islamic Finance.
Abdul Rahim congratulated the employees on their achievements which, he said, helped contribute directly to developing the Islamic banking and finance industry both in Bahrain and abroad.
“Banking is all about people,” said Abdul Rahim. “At Ithmaar Bank, we have long recognised our people as our greatest asset and we have repeatedly stressed that our continued success is, ultimately, dependent on our people,” he said.
“As a pioneered Islamic Bank, Ithmaar is committed to playing a key role in the development of the Islamic banking industry,” said Abdul Rahim. “One way we try to do so is by focusing on improving the qualifications and skills of our employees. This, in return, will reflect on the Bank’s performance, particularly in terms of delivering on our customers’ expectations and will in turn enhance the skill set in Islamic banking sector in the Kingdom,” he said.
“At Ithmaar Bank, we are working continuously to develop our employees who are the pillars for our success,” said Ithmaar Bank Head of Human Resources, Enas Rahimi. “We always look for training programmes that will help our workforce gain new professional skills and knowledge in Islamic banking,” she said.
“We also try to encourage our employees to join professional training programmes such as the Advanced Diploma in Islamic Finance,” said Rahimi. “These will help enhance their experience and add to their qualification which, in turn, will help their careers,” she said.
The following employees earned the Advanced Diploma in Islamic Finance Certificate: Ali Abbas Faraj Abbas, Ali Yusuf Ali Abdulwahab Jamaan, Khalil Ebrahim Mohammed Qabeel, Mohammed Abdulaziz Salman Al-Hasan, Muhjah Abdulrazaq Abdulla Fulad, Mohammed Abdulla Mohamed
Al-Awadhi, Yousif Mohammed Abdulla Al-Qasim, Faisal Riyadh Yusuf Sater, Naser Abdulla Naser Al-Naqib and Mai Abdulhameed Mohammed Al-Thawadi.
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ITHMAAR BANK’S RETAIL BANKING SUBSIDIARY IN PAKISTAN, FAYSAL BANK LIMITED, REPORTS HIGHER PROFITS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 29 May 2017 – Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, announced today (ed note: 29/05/17) that its retail banking subsidiary in Pakistan, Faysal Bank Limited (FBL), has reported remarkably improved profitability for the first quarter of 2017 compared to the corresponding period last year.
The announcement, by the Bank’s Chief Executive Officer and FBL Vice Chairman, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, follows the review and approval by the FBL Board of Directors of the financial results for the quarter ended 31 March 2017.
FBL, has upgraded its core banking system, and strengthened processes and increased its reach to preferred business sectors and customers through an improved product menu and increased branch network. FBL added 75 branches in 2016 and plans to add 50 more branches during 2017. These measures are expected to translate into better returns for shareholders of the Bank. FBL is listed on the Pakistan Stock Exchange and is mainly engaged in corporate, commercial, retail and consumer banking activities. Ithmaar Bank owns 66.6 percent of FBL.
“I am pleased to announce that FBL registered a healthy profit, after tax, of US$ 17.8 million (PKR 1.9 billion) during the first quarter of 2017, compared to US$ 12.9 million (PKR 1.4 billion) during corresponding period of 2016,” said Abdul Rahim. “During the last two years, the banking industry in Pakistan experienced lower interest rates. These economic realities have restricted the profit earning capacity of banks. As a result, FBL repositioned its strategy by introducing low cost deposit mobilization initiatives to protect spreads,” he said.
“FBL has also made sizable recoveries from delinquent clients and administrative cost has been kept under strict control,” said Abdul Rahim. “FBL successfully executed large corporate deals and was lead arranger for a number of entities in the transport and energy sectors pertaining to China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects. These measures helped increasing Earnings per Share (EPS) of the Bank for the first quarter, from PKR 1.13 to PKR 1.56,” he said.
“FBL’s Balance Sheet stands at US$ 4.2 billion (PKR 444 billion) and deposits have reached US$ 3.2 billion (PKR 338 billion) as at 31 March 2017, with a focus on maintaining spreads,” said Abdul Rahim. “FBL’s financial performance has earned the Bank “AA” and “A1+” ratings for the long and short terms respectively, with stable outlook from JCR-VIS Credit Rating Company Limited and Pakistan Credit Rating Agency Limited,” he said.
In May 2017, the Chairman of the FBL Board of Directors announced the appointment of Yousaf Hussain as acting Chief Executive of the Bank replacing the former Chief Executive who resigned in mid-May 2017. Abdul Rahim said, “Earlier during the year, the board has also inducted three independent directors, namely Fuad Azim Hashmi, Mian Mohammad Younis, and Ali Munir.” He also said the newly constituted board now comprises one-third independent directors with a rich blend of diverse local and international management and financial expertise. “We are confident that Faysal Bank will embark on the next phase of its ambitious journey under the guidance of the esteemed Board of Directors,” he added.
Abdul Rahim said that Hussain is an experienced professional banker with over 22 years of multifaceted local and international experience with leading institutions including ABN AMRO in the last eight years at FBL.

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ITHMAAR BANK LAUNCHES MASTERCARD CORPORATE CREDIT CARD

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 24 May 2017 – Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, announced today (ed note: 24/05/17) that it is introducing a new Sharia-compliant corporate credit card with Mastercard.
The new Ithmaar Bank Mastercard Corporate Credit Card is tailored to meet the specific requirements of corporate customers, as well as business owners and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) customers. Its development and subsequent introduction is a result of the Bank’s commitment to listening to, and delivering on, customer expectations.
The corporate credit card was unveiled during a launch event at the InterContinental Regency Hotel, during which Ithmaar Bank and Mastercard representatives outlined the extended features and benefits of the card to customers.
“Ithmaar Bank is determined to become the region’s premier Islamic retail bank,” said Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer Ahmed Abdul Rahim. “To do so, we continue to invest heavily in developing our products and services while also working to be closer to our customers – and this launch is another major step in that direction,” said Abdul Rahim.
“The introduction of the new corporate credit card solution, in cooperation with Mastercard, aims to meet the specific demands of our customers and addresses a pressing need identified by our corporate and SME customers,” said Abdul Rahim. “The corporate card allows for a one-stop payment solution which, ultimately, creates what could be the most convenient business payment solution for businesses,” he said.
“We are pleased to have worked with our partners at Mastercard to introduce this business payment solution, and we are delighted to now make it available to our customers,” said Abdul Rahim. “I am confident that the new card will go a long way towards making payments easier and more convenient for corporate customers,” he said.
“This launch reflects our commitment to creating tailored payment solutions that address the evolving needs of corporate cardholders,” said Mastercard Area Business Head, Northern Gulf, Pankaj Kathuria. “In addition to offering enhanced payment security and a host of exclusive benefits, the card will provide corporate customers with greater control over their payments and the flexibility to determine how, when and where their cards will be used. We are proud to team up with Ithmaar Bank to introduce this innovative payment solution that will further accelerate the displacement of cash in the Kingdom of Bahrain,” he said.
The new Ithmaar Bank card offers credit limits tailored to each specific customer, as well as other key features. An additional layer of security, for example, is embedded in the new corporate credit card with the Mastercard SecureCode authentication feature that protects the card against fraud.

Corporate liability waiver is enabled as well, and protects the company against unauthorised use of the card by its employees. Ithmaar Bank corporate credit card customers are also eligible for 20 percent discounts on daily business shipments with DHL shipping.

ITHMAAR BANK REPORTS FIRST QUARTER PROFITS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 14 May 2017 – Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (c), a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ithmaar Holding, reported today (ed note: 14/05/17) a net profit of BHD3.1 million for the first quarter of 2017. The Net profit attributable to equity holders of the Bank for the first quarter of 2017 was BHD1.14 million.
The announcement, by Ithmaar Bank Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Amr Al Faisal, follows the review and approval, by the Board of Directors, of the Bank’s consolidated financial results for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017. These are the Bank’s first published results since the successful completion in January this year of a planned reorganisation and the formal commencement of the new group structure and hence there are no comparatives.
“On behalf of the Ithmaar Bank Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that the Bank reported profits in the first three months following the successful reorganisation,” said HRH Prince Amr. “In the three-month period ended 31 March 2017, Ithmaar Bank reported a net income, before provisions for impairment and overseas taxation, of BHD6.49 million. Total income during the period was BHD38.67 million,” he said.
“As at 31 March 2017, the Bank’s total assets stand at BHD3.11 billion, and the total owners’ equity at BHD158.60 million,” said HRH Prince Amr.
Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said that following the reorganisation, the Bank is focusing all its efforts on developing its core retail banking business by continuously developing its products and services, improving its customer service offerings and growing closer to its customers.
“Ithmaar Bank is committed to becoming the region’s premier Islamic retail bank,” said Abdul Rahim. “The Bank’s financial performance during the first quarter of 2017 is testimony to the success of these efforts, and we are confident that, moving forward, we will continue to further build upon them,” he said.
“Ithmaar Bank is one of the largest retail banking networks in Bahrain and enjoys a track record of genuine innovation and a reputation for excellence,” said Abdul Rahim.
“Faysal Bank Limited (Pakistan), subsidiary of the Ithmaar Bank continues to report growth in business and will be adding 50 new branches throughout Pakistan as part of its branch expansion plan in 2017 to exceed 400 branches,” said Abdul Rahim
In 2017, Ithmaar Bank updated and re-launched its prize-based saving account, Thimaar, to offer prizes totalling more than US$3 million to 4,000 winners who maintain a minimum deposit of only BHD30. In addition to the monthly draws and the special Thimaar Junior draws for minors, Ithmaar Bank introduced in 2017 additional draws, including loyalty, National Day, Eid, and Semi Annual draws.
Earlier this year, Ithmaar Bank, in partnership with Batelco and Arab Financial Services, also formally launched Bahrain’s first ever mobile payment solution, Easy Pay. The solution uses secure Near Field Communication (NFC) tags to eliminate the need for cash or cards by allowing customers to shop simply by tapping their mobile phones at Point of Sale (POS) machines. This marked a key milestone for the Bahrain retail market, potentially revolutionizing shopping experiences of the customers with secure, real-time payments now possible directly from their mobile phones.
Ithmaar Bank also launched a special promotional campaign in 2017 offering customers who applied for personal financing the chance to have their alternate instalments paid by the Bank for a full year. In line with its commitment to its customers, Ithmaar Bank renewed a joint promotion with Gulf Air that grants Ithmaar Bank cardholders discounted prices for tickets purchased on gulfair.com. Under this agreement, Ithmaar Bank Credit Card and eCard holders receive a 10 percent discount when purchasing Gulf Air tickets online.

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ITHMAAR HOLDING REPORTS FIRST QUARTER PROFITS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 14 May 2017 – Ithmaar Holding BSC (formerly Ithmaar Bank BSC) (Ithmaar) reported today (ed note: 14/05/17) a net profit of US$5.79 million for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017, a 20 percent increase compared to the net profit of US$4.83 million reported for the same period last year. Net profit attributable to equity holders for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017 was US$0.58 million, a 52.7 percent decrease compared to a net profit of US$1.22 million reported for the same period last year.
The announcement, by Ithmaar Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Amr Al Faisal, follows the review and approval, by the Board of Directors, of Ithmaar’s consolidated financial results for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that Ithmaar continues to show stable, consistent growth in its core retail banking business,” said HRH Prince Amr. “Net income, before provision for impairments and overseas taxation, increased 27.7 percent to US$20.25 million for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017, compared to US$15.86 million reported for the same period last year. This increase is mainly due to an increase in income from core retail banking business, with income from murabaha and other financing increasing 14.4 percent to US$42.66 million for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017, compared to US$37.29 million for the same period last year,” he said.
Ithmaar Group Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said that following the successful completion of the reorganisation at the beginning of the year and the formal commencement of the new group structure, Ithmaar remains firmly focused on growing its core retail banking business.
“I am pleased to report that the balance sheet continues to be stable,” said Abdul Rahim. “Total assets stood at US$8.30 billion as at 31 March 2017 compared with US$8.34 billion as at 31 December 2016, but a significant 6.7 percent increase from US$7.78 billion as at 31 March 2016. Total financings remained stable at US$3.93 billion at 31 March 2017 and 31 December 2016, but increased by 5.4 percent from US$3.73 billion at 31 March 2016, a testimony to growth in our core businesses. Similarly, investment securities increased by 7.2 percent from US$1.87 billion at 31 December 2016 to US$2.01 billion at 31 March 2017, and increased by 31 percent from US$1.53 billion at 31 March 2016,” he said.
“Customer current accounts and due to investors increased by 1.5 percent from US$3.48 billion at 31 December 2016 to US$3.54 billion at 31 March 2017, and increased significantly by 9.8 percent from US$3.22 billion at 31 March 2016,” said Abdul Rahim. “The equity of unrestricted investment account holders, at US$2.65 billion as at 31 March 2017, decreased by 4.2 percent compared to US$2.77 billion as at 31 December 2016, but increased by 5.6 percent compared to US$2.51 billion as 31 March 2016,” he said.
“Faysal Bank Limited (Pakistan), subsidiary of Ithmaar Bank B.S.C.(C) continues to report growth in business and will be adding 50 new branches throughout Pakistan as part of its branch expansion plan in 2017 to exceed 400 branches,” said Abdul Rahim
The new structure, which was proposed by the Bank’s Board of Directors and approved by shareholders in March 2016, resulted in the conversion of Ithmaar Bank B.S.C into Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (Ithmaar Holding), which is licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) and is listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait. Ithmaar Holding retains 100 percent ownership of all assets formerly owned by Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. through its two wholly-owned subsidiaries Ithmaar Bank B.S.C (closed) (Ithmaar Bank), an Islamic retail bank subsidiary, which holds the core retail banking business, and IB Capital B.S.C. (closed) (IB Capital), an investment subsidiary, which holds investments and other non-core assets. The two subsidiaries are licensed and regulated by the CBB.

Earlier this year, shareholders approved a proposal to list Ithmaar Holding on additional stock exchanges in the region. The proposal, which was presented by a shareholder as an additional agenda item at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) in March 2017 was approved unopposed by the shareholders who welcomed the initiative.
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ITHMAAR BANK ANNOUNCES KEY APPOINTMENTS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 07 May 2017 – Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, announced today (ed note: 07/05/2017) two key appointments to its executive management team, and assigned new responsibilities to another senior executive.
Yousif Alkhan, presently the Head of Information Technology, has been assigned additional responsibility of Administration and will now be the Head of Information Technology and Administration Department; Krishnan Hariharan was appointed Chief Risk Officer; and Khalil Ebrahim Al Asfoor was appointed Acting Head of Internal Audit.
The announcement, by the Bank’s Chief Executive Officer Ahmed Abdul Rahim, is in line with the Bank’s commitment to continuous improvement, and is part of ongoing efforts to develop Ithmaar into the region’s premier Islamic retail bank.
“I congratulate Yousif on the new responsibilities assigned to him, and am delighted to welcome Krishnan and Khalil to the executive management team,” said Abdul Rahim. “I am confident that each of these senior executives will play a key role in contributing to the Bank’s continued growth and success, and I wish them all the best,” he said.
“Ithmaar has long recognised that, ultimately, it is the quality of our people that will drive our continued success,” said Abdul Rahim. “As a result, we strive to recruit and retain only the very best people, and we invest heavily in training and development to ensure our people remain among the best in the industry,” he said.
“As a pioneering Islamic retail bank, Ithmaar has also long-recognised the important role we must play in contributing to the development of Bahrain’s Islamic banking industry,” said Abdul Rahim. “This includes continuously developing our own national workforce through various training opportunities and, when necessary, by bringing international expertise from abroad to share their experience and technical know-how,” he said.
AlKhan has been with the Bank since 1989, when it was then called Faysal Islamic Bank of Bahrain. Alkhan holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from AMA International University and a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from the University of Bahrain
Prior to his current Ithmaar appointment, Hariharan was the Alizz Islamic Bank Chief Risk Officer. He holds a Masters degree in Financial Management from Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai University, India, as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree from Osmania University, India, and a Bachelor of Commerce, Mumbai University, India. It is his second professional assignment to Bahrain, where he had previously held senior executive positions including Eskan Bank Chief Risk Officer and Shamil Bank of Bahrain Chief Risk Officer.
Prior to his current Ithmaar appointment, Al Asfoor was Manager, Group Internal Control at Ahli United Bank. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the University of Bahrain as well as an Associate Professional Risk Manager (APRM) certificate from, United States. He is an IRCA certified Information Security Management System (ISMS) Auditor, ISO27001, Bureau VERITAS; is a Certified Islamic Banker (CIB) from the General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions, Bahrain, and a member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), United Kingdom.

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ITHMAAR SHAREHOLDERS REVIEW 2016 PERFORMANCE WITH REPORTED PROFITS AND SUCCESSFUL COMPLETION OF REORGANISATION

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 30 March 2017 –Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (formerly Ithmaar Bank B.S.C.) (Ithmaar) shareholders praised the transformation witnessed in 2016 with the successful completion of a major reorganisation as well as a complete turnaround in Ithmaar’s financial performance.
This followed an announcement that the reorganised Ithmaar became fully operational with the start of 2017, concluding the full implementation of plans for a new group structure that was designed to provide greater insight into the strength of the core retail banking operations and further facilitate the focused management of investment and non-core assets. As a result of its focus on core retail banking business, Ithmaar earlier reported a net profit of US$13.80 million for 2016, compared to a US$46.40 million net loss reported for 2015. Net profit attributable to equity holders for the year ended 31 December 2016 was US$3.28 million, compared to a net loss US$60.80 million reported for 2015.
The announcements were made by Ithmaar Board Member, Sheikh Zamil Abdulla Al-Zamil, who chaired Ithmaar’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) and the Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) which followed. Also present at the meetings, which were held at the Diplomat Radisson Blu Hotel in Bahrain, were Directors and members of the Ithmaar Executive Management team, representatives of its Sharia Supervisory Board, the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, statutory auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers, and the Bahrain Bourse.
The plans for a new group structure, which were discussed and approved at the last shareholders’ meeting on 28 March 2016, involved conversion of the commercial registration of Ithmaar Bank B.S.C into Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (Ithmaar Holding). Ithmaar Holding is licensed and regulated by the CBB and listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait. Following the conversion, Ithmaar Holding retains 100 percent ownership of all assets formerly owned by Ithmaar Bank through two wholly-owned subsidiaries, Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (c), an Islamic retail bank subsidiary which holds the core retail banking business, and IB Capital B.S.C. (c) (IB Capital), an investment subsidiary, which holds investments and other non-core assets. The two subsidiaries are licensed and regulated by the CBB.
At the meeting, Sheikh Zamil extended, on behalf of the Board and the Executive Management team, sincere thanks and appreciation to the Central Bank of Bahrain, the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait for their outstanding support which has led to the completion of the two-year long reorganisation project successfully and on time. During the EGM, shareholders also approved amendments to the Memorandum and Articles of Association of Ithmaar Holding.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that 2016 has been a year of remarkable transformation at Ithmaar,” said Sheikh Zamil. “Throughout the year, the focus remained on implementing the new group structure while continuously developing our core retail banking business. Ithmaar’s performance in 2016 is testimony to the success of these efforts, and we are confident that this growth will continue following the completion of the reorganisation and the formal commencement of the new group structure with the start of 2017,” he said.
Ithmaar Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said the financial results are a direct consequence of the clear focus on core retail banking business.
“In 2016, Ithmaar conducted certain process-reengineering initiatives to improve efficiency at the branches as well as enhance customer experiences at all possible touch points,” said Abdul Rahim. “As a result of Ithmaar’s consistent efforts in Bahrain to enhance its products, expand its network and introduce new services, retail banking customer current accounts, savings accounts, Thimaar and URIA deposits, increased by 10.9 percent in 2016, from US$1.72 billion at the end of 2015 to US$1.91 billion. Ithmaar’s financing business also increased by 7.2 percent, from US$1.18 billion at the end of 2015 to US$1.27 billion. The growth was driven mainly by home financing, which increased by 51 percent in 2016,” he said.
“Ithmaar’s success in 2016 is perhaps most clearly reflected in the growth in net income, before overseas taxation, which amounted to US$36.74 million for 2016, a complete turnaround from a net loss of US$17.07 million, before overseas taxation, reported for 2015. Total assets also increased to US$8.34 billion as at 31 December 2016, an increase of 2.5 percent from US$8.14 billion as at 31 December 2015,” said Abdul Rahim. “This is, in a large part, a result of continuously improving Ithmaar’s products and services while also keeping costs and expenses under control. Total expenses for 2016, for example, amounted to US$192.10 million, a marginal increase from the total expenses of US$190.41 million reported for 2015, despite the continuous expansion of Ithmaar’s retail banking operations both in Bahrain and in Pakistan,” he said.
“Our focus on business growth and enhanced customer satisfaction, however, did not distract us from our commitment to our social responsibilities and, in 2016, we continued to making real and meaningful contributions to the community in which we operate” said Abdul Rahim. “This, along with our clear commitment to transparency, has not gone unnoticed and, in 2016, the World Islamic Banking Conference singled Ithmaar out from among the world’s Islamic banks and presented it with a prestigious international award in recognition of its Corporate Social Responsibility and Financial Disclosure,” he said.
“The achievements of 2016 are made all the more impressive by Ithmaar’s continuously improving financial performance,” said Abdul Rahim. “The balance sheet continues to be stable, and our customer deposits continue to grow as is evident from the equity of unrestricted investment account holders growing to US$2.77 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 15.5 percent increase compared to US$2.40 billion as at 31 December 2015,” he said.
“This increase reflects customer confidence in Ithmaar, and is further evidence that efforts to grow continuously closer to customers are paying off,” said Abdul Rahim. “Current accounts and due to investors, for example, grew to US$3.48 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 9.3 percent increase compared to US$3.19 billion as at 31 December 2015. Financings Murabaha, Musharaka and Ijarah also increased to US$3.93 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 5.7 percent increase from US$3.72 billion as at 31 December 2015,” he said.
In 2016, Ithmaar further expanded its retail banking network, both in Bahrain where it added a new full-service branch in Galali and two Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in Hamad Town, as well as in Pakistan, where Faysal Bank Limited added 75 new, full-service Islamic branches.
In line with its commitment to continuously improving its products and services, Ithmaar partnered with Batelco and Arab Financial Services to launch Bahrain’s first ever mobile payment solution, EasyPay, in 2016. The solution uses secure Near Field Communication (NFC) tags to eliminate the need for cash or cards by allowing customers to shop simply by tapping their mobile phones at Point of Sale (POS) machines. The formal launch earlier this year marked a key milestone for the Bahrain retail market, potentially revolutionizing shopping experiences of the customers with secure, real-time payments now possible directly from their mobile phones.
At the end of the meetings, the Chairman thanked the attendees, as well as all shareholders, customers and investors for their continued support and confidence in Ithmaar.

ITHMAAR BANK CONTINUES FOCUS ON CORE RETAIL BANKING BUSINESS UNDER THE NEW GROUP STRUCTURE

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 30 April 2017– Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (closed) (Ithmaar Bank), a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, announced today (ed note: 30/04/17) that it is continuing operations as an Islamic retail bank that is licenced and regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) as part of the new organisation structure that was successfully completed in January 2017.
The announcement, by the Bank’s Chief Executive Officer Ahmed Abdul Rahim, follows a CBB Resolution published in the Official Gazette last Thursday (ed note: 27/04/17) regarding the termination of the Islamic retail banking licence of the former Ithmaar Bank B.S.C as part of the planned reorganisation and the process of completing the legal procedures of the reorganisation.
“I am pleased to report that, following the successful reorganisation that was competed with the start of the current year, we are continuing to focus on our core retail banking business through Ithmaar Bank B.S.C (closed) licensed by the CBB,” said Abdul Rahim. “This, we believe, allows us to better focus on improving our products and services while growing closer to our customers,” he said.
The reorganisation, which was presented by the Ithmaar Bank Board of Directors and approved by shareholders in March 2016, involved the conversion of the commercial registration of Ithmaar Bank B.S.C into Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (Ithmaar Holding). Ithmaar Holding is licensed and regulated by the CBB and listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait. Following the conversion, Ithmaar Holding retains 100 percent ownership of all assets formerly owned by Ithmaar Bank through two wholly-owned subsidiaries, the first being Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (closed) with an Islamic retail bank CBB license which holds the core retail banking business, and IB Capital B.S.C. (closed) (IB Capital), an investment subsidiary, which holds investments and other non-core assets. The two subsidiaries are licensed and regulated by the CBB.

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ITHMAAR SHAREHOLDERS APPROVE ADDITIONAL LISTING ON REGIONAL STOCK EXCHANGES

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 02 April 2017 –Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (formerly Ithmaar Bank B.S.C.) (Ithmaar) shareholders approved a proposal on listing Ithmaar on additional stock exchanges in the region.
The proposal, which was presented by a shareholder as an additional agenda item at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) held on Thursday (ed note: 30/03/17), was approved unopposed by the shareholders who welcomed the initiative.
Ithmaar Holding, which is licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain, is currently listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait. At the Thursday meeting, shareholders authorised the Board of Directors and Ithmaar management to study additional listings in various stock exchanges in the region and to complete the additional exchange listing process.
The meeting was chaired by Ithmaar Holding Board member Sheikh Zamil Abdulla Al-Zamil and attended by Directors Dr. Amani Khaled Bouresli and Nabeel Khaled Mohamed Kanoo, as well as Ithmaar Holding Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, Ithmaar Bank Chief Operating Officer, Ravindra Khot, and Ithmaar Bank General Manager, Banking Group, Abdul Hakeem Khalil Al-Mutawa. Also present were members of the Ithmaar Bank Executive Management team, as well as representatives of the Ithmaar Holding Sharia Supervisory Board, the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, statutory auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers, and the Bahrain Bourse.
At the meeting, shareholders praised the transformation witnessed in 2016 with the successful completion of a major reorganisation as well as a complete turnaround in Ithmaar’s financial performance. The reorganised Ithmaar became fully operational with the start of 2017, concluding the full implementation of plans for a new group structure that was designed to provide greater insight into the strength of the core retail banking operations and further facilitate the focused management of investment and non-core assets. As a result of its focus on core retail banking business, Ithmaar reported a net profit of US$13.80 million for 2016, compared to a US$46.40 million net loss reported for 2015. Net profit attributable to equity holders for the year ended 31 December 2016 was US$3.28 million, compared to a net loss US$60.80 million reported for 2015.

ITHMAAR HOLDING REPORTS FIRST QUARTER PROFITS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 14 May 2017 – Ithmaar Holding BSC (formerly Ithmaar Bank BSC) (Ithmaar) reported today (ed note: 14/05/17) a net profit of US$5.79 million for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017, a 20 percent increase compared to the net profit of US$4.83 million reported for the same period last year. Net profit attributable to equity holders for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017 was US$0.58 million, a 52.7 percent decrease compared to a net profit of US$1.22 million reported for the same period last year.
The announcement, by Ithmaar Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Amr Al Faisal, follows the review and approval, by the Board of Directors, of Ithmaar’s consolidated financial results for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that Ithmaar continues to show stable, consistent growth in its core retail banking business,” said HRH Prince Amr. “Net income, before provision for impairments and overseas taxation, increased 27.7 percent to US$20.25 million for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017, compared to US$15.86 million reported for the same period last year. This increase is mainly due to an increase in income from core retail banking business, with income from murabaha and other financing increasing 14.4 percent to US$42.66 million for the three-month period ended 31 March 2017, compared to US$37.29 million for the same period last year,” he said.
Ithmaar Group Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said that following the successful completion of the reorganisation at the beginning of the year and the formal commencement of the new group structure, Ithmaar remains firmly focused on growing its core retail banking business.
“I am pleased to report that the balance sheet continues to be stable,” said Abdul Rahim. “Total assets stood at US$8.30 billion as at 31 March 2017 compared with US$8.34 billion as at 31 December 2016, but a significant 6.7 percent increase from US$7.78 billion as at 31 March 2016. Total financings remained stable at US$3.93 billion at 31 March 2017 and 31 December 2016, but increased by 5.4 percent from US$3.73 billion at 31 March 2016, a testimony to growth in our core businesses. Similarly, investment securities increased by 7.2 percent from US$1.87 billion at 31 December 2016 to US$2.01 billion at 31 March 2017, and increased by 31 percent from US$1.53 billion at 31 March 2016,” he said.
“Customer current accounts and due to investors increased by 1.5 percent from US$3.48 billion at 31 December 2016 to US$3.54 billion at 31 March 2017, and increased significantly by 9.8 percent from US$3.22 billion at 31 March 2016,” said Abdul Rahim. “The equity of unrestricted investment account holders, at US$2.65 billion as at 31 March 2017, decreased by 4.2 percent compared to US$2.77 billion as at 31 December 2016, but increased by 5.6 percent compared to US$2.51 billion as 31 March 2016,” he said.
“Faysal Bank Limited (Pakistan), subsidiary of Ithmaar Bank B.S.C.(C) continues to report growth in business and will be adding 50 new branches throughout Pakistan as part of its branch expansion plan in 2017 to exceed 400 branches,” said Abdul Rahim
The new structure, which was proposed by the Bank’s Board of Directors and approved by shareholders in March 2016, resulted in the conversion of Ithmaar Bank B.S.C into Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (Ithmaar Holding), which is licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) and is listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait. Ithmaar Holding retains 100 percent ownership of all assets formerly owned by Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. through its two wholly-owned subsidiaries Ithmaar Bank B.S.C (closed) (Ithmaar Bank), an Islamic retail bank subsidiary, which holds the core retail banking business, and IB Capital B.S.C. (closed) (IB Capital), an investment subsidiary, which holds investments and other non-core assets. The two subsidiaries are licensed and regulated by the CBB.

Earlier this year, shareholders approved a proposal to list Ithmaar Holding on additional stock exchanges in the region. The proposal, which was presented by a shareholder as an additional agenda item at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) in March 2017 was approved unopposed by the shareholders who welcomed the initiative.

ITHMAAR SHAREHOLDERS APPROVE ADDITIONAL LISTING ON REGIONAL STOCK EXCHANGES

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 02 April 2017 –Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (formerly Ithmaar Bank B.S.C.) (Ithmaar) shareholders approved a proposal on listing Ithmaar on additional stock exchanges in the region.
The proposal, which was presented by a shareholder as an additional agenda item at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) held on Thursday (ed note: 30/03/17), was approved unopposed by the shareholders who welcomed the initiative.
Ithmaar Holding, which is licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain, is currently listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait. At the Thursday meeting, shareholders authorised the Board of Directors and Ithmaar management to study additional listings in various stock exchanges in the region and to complete the additional exchange listing process.
The meeting was chaired by Ithmaar Holding Board member Sheikh Zamil Abdulla Al-Zamil and attended by Directors Dr. Amani Khaled Bouresli and Nabeel Khaled Mohamed Kanoo, as well as Ithmaar Holding Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, Ithmaar Bank Chief Operating Officer, Ravindra Khot, and Ithmaar Bank General Manager, Banking Group, Abdul Hakeem Khalil Al-Mutawa. Also present were members of the Ithmaar Bank Executive Management team, as well as representatives of the Ithmaar Holding Sharia Supervisory Board, the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, statutory auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers, and the Bahrain Bourse.
At the meeting, shareholders praised the transformation witnessed in 2016 with the successful completion of a major reorganisation as well as a complete turnaround in Ithmaar’s financial performance. The reorganised Ithmaar became fully operational with the start of 2017, concluding the full implementation of plans for a new group structure that was designed to provide greater insight into the strength of the core retail banking operations and further facilitate the focused management of investment and non-core assets. As a result of its focus on core retail banking business, Ithmaar reported a net profit of US$13.80 million for 2016, compared to a US$46.40 million net loss reported for 2015. Net profit attributable to equity holders for the year ended 31 December 2016 was US$3.28 million, compared to a net loss US$60.80 million reported for 2015.
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ITHMAAR SHAREHOLDERS REVIEW 2016 PERFORMANCE WITH REPORTED PROFITS AND SUCCESSFUL COMPLETION OF REORGANISATION

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 30 March 2017 –Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (formerly Ithmaar Bank B.S.C.) (Ithmaar) shareholders praised the transformation witnessed in 2016 with the successful completion of a major reorganisation as well as a complete turnaround in Ithmaar’s financial performance.
This followed an announcement that the reorganised Ithmaar became fully operational with the start of 2017, concluding the full implementation of plans for a new group structure that was designed to provide greater insight into the strength of the core retail banking operations and further facilitate the focused management of investment and non-core assets. As a result of its focus on core retail banking business, Ithmaar earlier reported a net profit of US$13.80 million for 2016, compared to a US$46.40 million net loss reported for 2015. Net profit attributable to equity holders for the year ended 31 December 2016 was US$3.28 million, compared to a net loss US$60.80 million reported for 2015.
The announcements were made by Ithmaar Board Member, Sheikh Zamil Abdulla Al-Zamil, who chaired Ithmaar’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) and the Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) which followed. Also present at the meetings, which were held at the Diplomat Radisson Blu Hotel in Bahrain, were Directors and members of the Ithmaar Executive Management team, representatives of its Sharia Supervisory Board, the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, statutory auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers, and the Bahrain Bourse.
The plans for a new group structure, which were discussed and approved at the last shareholders’ meeting on 28 March 2016, involved conversion of the commercial registration of Ithmaar Bank B.S.C into Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (Ithmaar Holding). Ithmaar Holding is licensed and regulated by the CBB and listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait. Following the conversion, Ithmaar Holding retains 100 percent ownership of all assets formerly owned by Ithmaar Bank through two wholly-owned subsidiaries, Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (c), an Islamic retail bank subsidiary which holds the core retail banking business, and IB Capital B.S.C. (c) (IB Capital), an investment subsidiary, which holds investments and other non-core assets. The two subsidiaries are licensed and regulated by the CBB.
At the meeting, Sheikh Zamil extended, on behalf of the Board and the Executive Management team, sincere thanks and appreciation to the Central Bank of Bahrain, the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait for their outstanding support which has led to the completion of the two-year long reorganisation project successfully and on time. During the EGM, shareholders also approved amendments to the Memorandum and Articles of Association of Ithmaar Holding.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that 2016 has been a year of remarkable transformation at Ithmaar,” said Sheikh Zamil. “Throughout the year, the focus remained on implementing the new group structure while continuously developing our core retail banking business. Ithmaar’s performance in 2016 is testimony to the success of these efforts, and we are confident that this growth will continue following the completion of the reorganisation and the formal commencement of the new group structure with the start of 2017,” he said.
Ithmaar Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said the financial results are a direct consequence of the clear focus on core retail banking business.
“In 2016, Ithmaar conducted certain process-reengineering initiatives to improve efficiency at the branches as well as enhance customer experiences at all possible touch points,” said Abdul Rahim. “As a result of Ithmaar’s consistent efforts in Bahrain to enhance its products, expand its network and introduce new services, retail banking customer current accounts, savings accounts, Thimaar and URIA deposits, increased by 10.9 percent in 2016, from US$1.72 billion at the end of 2015 to US$1.91 billion. Ithmaar’s financing business also increased by 7.2 percent, from US$1.18 billion at the end of 2015 to US$1.27 billion. The growth was driven mainly by home financing, which increased by 51 percent in 2016,” he said.
“Ithmaar’s success in 2016 is perhaps most clearly reflected in the growth in net income, before overseas taxation, which amounted to US$36.74 million for 2016, a complete turnaround from a net loss of US$17.07 million, before overseas taxation, reported for 2015. Total assets also increased to US$8.34 billion as at 31 December 2016, an increase of 2.5 percent from US$8.14 billion as at 31 December 2015,” said Abdul Rahim. “This is, in a large part, a result of continuously improving Ithmaar’s products and services while also keeping costs and expenses under control. Total expenses for 2016, for example, amounted to US$192.10 million, a marginal increase from the total expenses of US$190.41 million reported for 2015, despite the continuous expansion of Ithmaar’s retail banking operations both in Bahrain and in Pakistan,” he said.
“Our focus on business growth and enhanced customer satisfaction, however, did not distract us from our commitment to our social responsibilities and, in 2016, we continued to making real and meaningful contributions to the community in which we operate” said Abdul Rahim. “This, along with our clear commitment to transparency, has not gone unnoticed and, in 2016, the World Islamic Banking Conference singled Ithmaar out from among the world’s Islamic banks and presented it with a prestigious international award in recognition of its Corporate Social Responsibility and Financial Disclosure,” he said.
“The achievements of 2016 are made all the more impressive by Ithmaar’s continuously improving financial performance,” said Abdul Rahim. “The balance sheet continues to be stable, and our customer deposits continue to grow as is evident from the equity of unrestricted investment account holders growing to US$2.77 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 15.5 percent increase compared to US$2.40 billion as at 31 December 2015,” he said.
“This increase reflects customer confidence in Ithmaar, and is further evidence that efforts to grow continuously closer to customers are paying off,” said Abdul Rahim. “Current accounts and due to investors, for example, grew to US$3.48 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 9.3 percent increase compared to US$3.19 billion as at 31 December 2015. Financings Murabaha, Musharaka and Ijarah also increased to US$3.93 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 5.7 percent increase from US$3.72 billion as at 31 December 2015,” he said.
In 2016, Ithmaar further expanded its retail banking network, both in Bahrain where it added a new full-service branch in Galali and two Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in Hamad Town, as well as in Pakistan, where Faysal Bank Limited added 75 new, full-service Islamic branches.
In line with its commitment to continuously improving its products and services, Ithmaar partnered with Batelco and Arab Financial Services to launch Bahrain’s first ever mobile payment solution, EasyPay, in 2016. The solution uses secure Near Field Communication (NFC) tags to eliminate the need for cash or cards by allowing customers to shop simply by tapping their mobile phones at Point of Sale (POS) machines. The formal launch earlier this year marked a key milestone for the Bahrain retail market, potentially revolutionizing shopping experiences of the customers with secure, real-time payments now possible directly from their mobile phones.
At the end of the meetings, the Chairman thanked the attendees, as well as all shareholders, customers and investors for their continued support and confidence in Ithmaar.
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ITHMAAR BANK OFFERS GULF AIR DISCOUNTS FOR CARDHOLDERS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN– 7 March 2017: Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, has renewed a joint promotion with Gulf Air, the national carrier of the Kingdom of Bahrain that grants Ithmaar Bank cardholders discounted prices for tickets purchased on gulfair.com.
Under this agreement, Ithmaar Bank Credit Card and eCard holders receive a 10 percent discount when purchasing Gulf Air tickets online. The offer is applicable on all the national carrier’s online fares for both Falcon Gold (business) and economy class tickets purchased from the official Gulf Air website, www.gulfair.com, using a discount code that will be distributed to all Ithmaar Bank cardholders. The promotion is valid until 31 December 2017.

“Ithmaar Bank is committed to becoming the region’s premier Islamic retail bank,” said Ithmaar Bank General Manager, Banking Group, Abdul Hakeem Al Mutawa. “In line with that commitment, we are continuously improving our products and services to ensure we remain the Islamic retail bank of choice among the people of Bahrain. This agreement with Gulf Air, for example, provides Ithmaar Bank customers preferential pricing, enabling them to travel to their favourite destinations at discounted prices on Bahrain’s national carrier,” he said.
“We are pleased to renew this promotion with Ithmaar Bank giving Ithmaar Bank cardholders the chance to continue experiencing Gulf Air’s hallmark Arabian hospitality and award-winning services at exclusive rates,” said Gulf Air Chief Commercial Officer, Ahmed Janahi.

To view the discount code, visit www.ithmaarbank.com/offers

ITHMAAR HOLDING (FORMERLY ITHMAAR BANK B.S.C.) ANNOUNCES 2016 PROFITS, REPORTS CONTINUED GROWTH IN CORE BUSINESS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 27 February 2017 – Ithmaar Holding BSC (formerly Ithmaar Bank BSC) (Ithmaar) reported today (ed note: 27/02/17) a net profit of US$13.80 million for the year ended 31 December 2016, compared to a net loss of US$46.40 million reported for 2015. Net profit attributable to equity holders of the Bank for the year ended 31 December 2016 was US$3.28 million, compared to a net loss US$60.80 million reported for 2015.
The 2016 financial results include a net loss for the three-month period ended 31 December 2016 of US$2.93 million compared to the net loss of US$57.79 million reported for the same period last year. Net loss attributable to equity holders of the Bank for the three-month period ended 31 December 2016 was US$3.23 million compared to the US$62.90 million net loss reported for the same period last year.
The announcement, by Ithmaar Bank Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Amr Al Faisal, follows the review and approval, by the Board of Directors, of Ithmaar’s consolidated financial results for the year ended 31 December 2016.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that Ithmaar has returned to profitability for 2016 as it continues to show stable growth in its core retail banking business,” said HRH Prince Amr. “This is most clearly reflected in Ithmaar’s net income, before overseas taxation, which amounted to US$36.74 million, for the year ended 31 December 2016, a 315 percent increase and a complete turnaround from the US$17.07 million net loss, before overseas taxation, reported for 2015,” he said.
“This is, in a large part, a result of continuously improving Ithmaar’s products and services while also keeping costs and expenses under control,” said HRH Prince Amr. “Total expenses for the year ended 31 December 2016, for example, amounted to US$192.10 million, a marginal increase from the total expenses of US$190.41 million reported for 2015. This is despite the continuous expansions of Ithmaar’s retail banking operations both in Bahrain and in Pakistan, where 75 new branches were opened in 2016.” he said.
“Ithmaar’s financial performance in 2016 is testimony to the efforts invested in focusing on developing the Bank’s core retail banking business,” said HRH Prince Amr. “We are confident that, following the completion of the reorganisation and the formal commencement of the new group structure this year, we will further develop this growth,” he said.
The new structure, which was proposed by the Bank’s Board of Directors and approved by shareholders in March 2016, resulted in the conversion of Ithmaar Bank B.S.C into Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (Ithmaar Holding), which is licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain
(CBB) and is listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait. Ithmaar Holding retains 100 percent ownership of all assets formerly owned by Ithmaar Bank B.S.C., through two wholly-owned subsidiaries Ithmaar Bank B.S.C (closed) (Ithmaar Bank), an Islamic retail bank subsidiary which holds the core retail banking business, and IB Capital B.S.C. (closed) (IB Capital), an investment subsidiary, which holds investments and other non-core assets. The two subsidiaries are licensed and regulated by the CBB.

“In this context, we extend our sincere thanks and appreciation to the Central Bank of Bahrain and the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism as well as the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait for their outstanding support which has led to the completion of the two-year long reorganisation project successfully on time,” said HRH Prince Amr.

Ithmaar Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, noted that the 2016 financial results demonstrate that Ithmaar’s efforts to grow its core retail banking business were paying off, and said the new structure will facilitate it taking advantage of new growth opportunities and help generate greater value to shareholders.
“I am pleased to report that Ithmaar’s financial performance in 2016 indicates that efforts to focus on our core retail banking business are clearly paying off,” said Abdul Rahim. “The core business areas of financing, customer deposits, and unrestricted investment account holders have achieved good growth, resulting in increasing total assets to US$8.34 billion as at 31 December 2016, an increase of 2.5 percent from US$8.14 billion as at 31 December 2015,” he said.
“I am pleased, also, to report that our customer deposits continue to grow,” said Abdul Rahim. “This is evident from the equity of unrestricted investment account holders growing to US$2.77 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 15.5 percent increase compared to US$2.40 billion as at 31 December 2015,” he said.
“This increase reflects customer confidence in Ithmaar, and is a further evidence that Ithmaar’s efforts to grow continuously closer to its customers are paying off,” said Abdul Rahim. “Current accounts and due to investors, for example, grew to US$3.48 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 9.3 percent increase compared to US$3.19 billion as at 31 December 2015. Total Financing (Murabaha, Musharaka and Ijarah) also increased to US$3.93 billion as at 31 December 2016, a 5.7 percent increase from US$3.72 billion as at 31 December 2015,” he said.
“The shareholders’ equity increased to US$427.4 million as at 31 December 2016, a 3.2 percent increase from US$414.2 million as at 31 December 2015,” said Abdul Rahim.
Abdul Rahim also thanked the CBB and the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, as well as the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait for their continued guidance and support.

“The new group structure will assist the Bank’s long-term strategy for growth by providing greater insight into the strength of its core retail banking operations and further facilitating the focussed management of the Group’s investment assets,” said Abdul Rahim.
“The financial results consistently show that our efforts to significantly transform the Group’s operations and focus on developing our core business are paying off, and that we are on the right track,” said Abdul Rahim. “The new structure is the next logical step in this process, and underlines our commitment to become one of the region’s leading Islamic financial institution,” he said.
In 2016, Ithmaar further expanded its retail banking network, both in Bahrain where it added a new full-service branch in Galali and two Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in Hamad Town, as well as in Pakistan, where Faysal Bank Limited added 75 new, full-service Islamic branches.
In line with its commitment to continuously improving its products and services, Ithmaar partnered with Batelco and Arab Financial Services to launch Bahrain’s first ever mobile payment solution, Easy Pay, in 2016. The solution uses secure Near Field Communication (NFC) tags to eliminate the need for cash or cards by allowing customers to shop simply by tapping their mobile phones at Point of Sale (POS) machines. The formal launch earlier this year marked a key milestone for the Bahrain retail market, potentially revolutionizing shopping experiences of the customers with secure, real-time payments now possible directly from their mobile phones.
Ithmaar was last year singled out among the world’s Islamic banks for a prestigious international award in recognition of its Corporate Social Responsibility and Financial Disclosure. The independent award was presented at the World Islamic Banking Conference (WIBC) that was in Bahrain last year in strategic partnership with the CBB. The WIBC is a high-profile event, which was attended by leading international banking experts, and is widely recognised as one of the most important events on the world Islamic banking calendar.

ITHMAAR BANK ENHANCES SERVICE TO CUSTOMERS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 19 February 2017: Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, organised sign language training sessions for branch employees to help them better communicate with customers with hearing disabilities and improve their banking experience.
The training sessions were organised in line with the Bank’s long-standing commitments both to playing a real and meaningful role in the community and to continuously improving its customers’ Islamic banking experiences. The sessions, which were organised by the Ithmaar Bank Human Resources department in cooperation with the Bahrain Deaf Society, were delivered by a specialised instructor at the Bank’s headquarters in Seef.
“As a pioneering Islamic retail bank, we take our responsibilities towards our community very seriously,” said Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim. “As a result, we have always tried to accommodate the requirements of customers with special needs,” he said.
“On the request of the Central Bank of Bahrain, the Kingdom’s banking and financial services regulator, we introduced a range of additional new services in 2016 specifically for customers with special needs,” said Abdul Rahim. “As part of that initiative, we arranged specialised training sessions for branch employees to allow them to communicate using sign language with hearing impaired customers. The training sessions concluded in December,” he said.
“We organised these specialised sign language training sessions to help our employees gaining new skills,” said Ithmaar Bank Head of Human Resources, Enas Rahimi. “This, in turn, contributes both to improving the quality of life for people with special needs in Bahrain and to developing the Kingdom’s banking and finance industry,” she said.
“The training sessions were developed by specialised experts specifically to meet the requirements of hearing disabled bank customers,” said Rahimi. “Ultimately, our goal is to develop qualified employees who can serve hearing impaired customers. This will help maintain customer confidentiality and improve their Islamic banking experience,” she said.

ITHMAAR BANK HOSTS ANNUAL STAFF GATHERING, HONOURS LONG-SERVING EMPLOYEES

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 12 February 2017: Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, celebrated its employees’ achievements and honoured long-serving staff at the Bank’s Annual Staff Gathering.
The annual event, held in line with Ithmaar Bank’s long-standing tradition of recognising employee commitment and dedication, was attended by more than 330 employees from the Bank’s various departments, including outsourced staff, trainees, temporary contract employees, office attendants and security guards.
Speaking at the event, the Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, thanked all the employees for their contributions, particularly the long-serving employees, and congratulated them on their achievements.
“The Annual Staff Gathering is an opportunity for all of us to get together in a less formal setting, away from our professional roles and responsibilities, and get to know one another on a more personal level,” said Abdul Rahim. “This reinforces our shared sense of purpose as we march together towards our common goals,” he said.
“At Ithmaar Bank, we have long maintained that, ultimately, it is the quality of our people that drives our continued success,” said Abdul Rahim. “Our collective success, as a financial institution, is a direct result of our individual achievements as employees,” he said.
“The past year has been as busy one for all of us, and we have much to be proud of,” said Abdul Rahim. “We continued expanding our retail banking network, adding a full-service branch in Galali and two Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in Hamad Town, as well as enhancing our products and services. Our focus on business expansion did not distract us from our long-standing commitment to the community and, in the past year, we organized summer internships for 52 students from different universities across Bahrain,” he said.
“Our achievements have helped earn the Bank a prestigious WIBC award in recognition of our Corporate Social Responsibility and Financial Disclosure,” said Abdul Rahim. “Meanwhile, our employees won first place at the Nations Category in the Bahrain SWS Endurance Championship and, although it was the first time we participated in the Annual Banking and Financial Institutions Futsal Tournament hosted by Al Najma Club, our team qualified for the semi-finals. Our employees also won second place in the “Project Convention Team Building Game” hosted by BIBF,” he said.
“Last year, we also launched the Bank’s Career Progression Plan, a new initiative designed to groom Bahrain’s future leaders by developing employees who demonstrate exceptional potential,” said Abdul Rahim.
The Annual Staff Gathering was organised by the Ithmaar Bank’s Social Committee and hosted at the Crowne Plaza.
“Our employees are our most valued assets, and the Annual Staff Gathering is an opportunity to celebrate our joint achievements and reinforce our shared commitments,” said Ithmaar Bank Head of Human Resources, Enas Rahimi, who also heads the Bank’s Social Committee. “In particular, it is also an opportunity to celebrate our long-serving employees – especially those who have completed 25, 15 and ten years – as well as our long-serving office attendants and security guards who have served 15, ten and five years. The fact that so many of us have been with the Bank for so long is a reflection of the shared, mutual commitment between the employees and the Bank,” she said.
The following Ithmaar Bank employees received Long Service Awards: Twenty-five Years: Ali Mohammed Ali Janahi; Fifteen Years: Abdulla Hussain Ebrahim Al-Mulla; Ten Years: Khalil Ebrahim Mohammed Qabeel, Alya Ghuloom Hasan Malalla, Najla Jassim Mohammed Hasan, Abdulla Yousif Abdulla Al-Najdi, Maryam Mohamed Abdulla Khonji, Abdulla Ali Abdulla Al-Jowder, Sami Abdulla Ahmed Bucheeri, Eman Ali Abdul Aziz Mohammed, Isa Mohammed Ahmed Al Rashid, Salman Ahmed Dawood Ahmed, Jamal Rashid Abdulla Al-Senan, Abdulrahman Aamer Abdulrahman Al-Aamer, Ebrahim Hussain Ebrahim Rostam, Abdulla Mustafa Husain Amer, Abdulla Nooraldin Mohammed Al-Khateeb, Syed Shahzad Bukhari, and Dana Aqeel Mahmood Raees.
The following outsourced office attendant and security guards received Long Service Awards: Fifteen Years: Jafar Ahmed Abdul Hashem; Ten Years: Muhammad Zohoor Bagh, Musthaffa cheethayil, Ashraf Parkkal, Bandacita Mathias and Rashid Kamal Uddin; Five Years: Kamal Omar, Shamal Kartick Chowdhury, Abdul Haleem Nuruzzaman, Mohammed Omar Faruq, Yousup Shamsul Huda, Monjur Mofizur Rahman, Shorab Khurshid Alam, Ebrahim Sale Ahmmed, Zahirul Islam Mohd, Kombo Isamil, Ameer Batcha Basheer Ahmed, Krishna Kumar Sherestha, Nasir Hassan, Abul Hashem Muzaffar Ali and Mohammed Hanif Abu Taher.

ITHMAAR BANK LAUNCHES ADDITIONAL NEW SERVICES FOR CUSTOMERS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 24 January 2017: Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, announced today (ed note: 24/01/17) that it has introduced additional new services at its Main Branch for customers with special needs.
The new services, which were introduced before the end of last year on the request of the Central Bank of Bahrain, the Kingdom’s banking and financial services regulator, include adapting the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) to offer voice-guided sessions for cash withdrawals, balance enquiries and Personal Identification (PIN) changes. The ATM height was also lowered to provide easier access from a wheel chair. Ithmaar Bank also assigned a dedicated, clearly-marked desk to serve customers with special needs on a priority basis; created new Braille forms for visually impaired customers; and adapted existing procedures to further improve their Islamic banking experience. The Bank also assigned employees to special training courses – including sign language for banking terms – so they may better serve customers with special needs.
“As a pioneering Islamic retail bank, Ithmaar Bank has long recognised the important role we must play in serving our local community,” said Ithmaar Bank General Manager, Banking Group, Abdulhakeem Al Mutawa. “Although we offer all our products and services to all customers without discrimination, we have always gone that extra mile in supporting those who require additional assistance,” he said.
“We have always, for example, had dedicated, clearly-marked parking facilities for customers with special needs at our Main Branch, and both the Branch and the ATM were designed to be wheelchair accessible,” said Al Mutawa. “Dedicated Ithmaar Bank employees with special training provide immediate service to customers with special needs, such as those with visual, hearing or other physical impairments. This is in addition, of course, to the fact that all Ithmaar Bank branches are designed to offer suitable waiting areas for all customers, including disabled and senior citizens.” he said.
“As a long-standing rule, all transactions of customers with visual impairments have always been conducted in the presence of the customer’s representative, as well as two Ithmaar Bank employees to ensure the customer’s security,” said Al Mutawa.
“Ithmaar Bank is committed to becoming the Islamic bank of choice in Bahrain,” said Al Mutawa. “With the guidance and support of the CBB, we will continue to work towards improving our products and services so we can better serve all Bahrain’s people – including those with special needs,” he said.

ITHMAAR BANK IMPROVES THIMAAR, REDUCING MINIMUM AMOUNT AND INCREASING TOTAL WINNERS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 14 January 2017: Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, re-launched its Thimaar savings account for a new year, reducing the minimum amount of savings required to win a prize and increasing both the total number of winners and the total prize purse.
The improvements to Ithmaar Bank’s Thimaar offering were made in line with the Bank’s commitment to listening closely to its customers’ requirements and using their feedback to continuously improve its products and services. As a result, the new Thimaar reduces the minimum deposit to BD30, currently the lowest offered by any prize-based savings account in Bahrain, while also increasing the number of winners to 4,044, currently the highest in Bahrain, as well as the total prize purse to USD3,000,000, one of the biggest in the Kingdom. The new Thimaar Account rolls out from Sunday (ed note 15/01/17).
“Ithmaar Bank is committed to becoming the Islamic retail bank of choice,” said Ithmaar Bank Assistant General Manager, Head of Retail Banking, Mohammed Janahi. “In line with that commitment, we are constantly working to enhance our customers’ Islamic banking experience,” he said.
“Prize-based savings accounts have become an almost standard offering among both Islamic and conventional retail banks in Bahrain,” said Janahi. “However, having listened attentively to our customers’ feedback, we recognised a need to reduce the minimum saving required to be eligible for a prize. We also noticed a pronounced, perhaps obvious, customer demand for increased chances to win – and we restructured the new Thimaar accordingly,” he said.
In 2017, Thimaar will offer a total of USD3,055,000 in prizes – including USD1,020,000 monthly prizes, USD900,000 loyalty prizes, USD600,000 Eid prizes, USD200,000 semi-annual prizes and USD125,000 national day prizes – to a total of 4,044 winners, including 840 Junior winners.
Every BD30 maintained as an average daily balance qualifies a customer to enter the draws. The more customers save, and the longer they maintain balances in multiples of BD30, the more opportunities they have to win.

ITHMAAR BANK CUSTOMER WINS AUDI CAR AND US$25,000 CASH IN QUARTERLY THIMAAR DRAW

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 11 January 2017: Ithmaar Bank customer who participated in Ithmaar Bank’s prize-based saving account Thimaar was presented with a luxury car and US$25,000 in prize money winning the latest quarterly prize.
Thimaar was introduced by Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, to encourage a more responsible saving pattern by offering prize-linked incentives alongside anticipated profits to the customers. Every year since its launch almost six years ago, Thimaar has been revised to include new prize schemes and, during 2016, Ithmaar Bank distributed 4,000 prizes totalling US$2.3 million.
The latest Thimaar prize, an Audi A6 and US$25,000 in prize money, was awarded to Rafiqul Islam Masum Habibur Rahman, a Bangladeshi national, who won the fourth quarterly Thimaar prize following a draw on 5 January that was supervised by representatives from the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, external supervisors, Key Point, and the Bank’s own internal auditors.
The prize was presented at a ceremony held at Seef Mall and attended by Ithmaar Bank General Manager, Banking Group, Abdul Hakeem Al Mutawa and other senior officials from the Bank. Ithmaar Bank also announced 187 other Thimaar winners following the draw, including a US$10,000 monthly prize winner, 93 US$1,000 Thimaar winners, and 93 US$200 Thimaar Junior winners.
Thirty-two year old Rahman said this is the biggest prize he has ever won, and that becoming a Thimaar winner could significantly improve his life.
“Winning a luxury car as well as thousands of dollars at the same time is a really big deal for anyone, particularly me,” said Rahman. “Although this was, obviously, something I had always hoped for, it was not something I really expected and I am not sure what I will do with the prize yet,” he said.
“It is the first time I win a Thimaar prize and I feel really blessed to have won such a large one. I am sure will help me in many different ways,” said Rahman. “I would not have won if I had not participated, and I am really glad I decided to start saving with Ithmaar Bank. In fact, I will encourage my family and friends to save with Thimaar,” he said.
Al Mutawa congratulated Rahman and all Thimaar prize winners, and wished them all continued success.
“It is always such a delight to present Thimaar winners with their prizes,” said Al Mutawa. “The prizes, which reward responsible savings, often have significant effects on the winners’ lives and we are truly pleased to be part of that experience,” he said.
“Ithmaar Bank is committed to becoming the Islamic retail bank of choice in Bahrain,” said Al Mutawa. “To do so, we work towards continuously enhancing our customers’ Islamic banking experience as well as on continuously developing our products and services,” he said.
In its current format, Thimaar provided US$3,600 in daily prizes, one US$10,000 monthly prize, four car and cash quarterly prizes totalling US$300,000, and US$600,000 in Eid prizes. Every BD50 maintained as an average daily balance qualifies a customer to enter the draws. The more customers save, and the longer they maintain balances in multiples of BD50, the more opportunities they have to win.
The full list of winners is available at www.ithmaarbank.com/thimaar

BAHRAIN INDUSTRY LEADERS PARTNER TO LAUNCH FIRST OF ITS KIND MOBILE PAYMENT SERVICE

Manama, Bahrain: Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Batelco, Bahrain’s leading telecom provider, and Arab Financial Services (AFS), one of the region’s leading electronic payments outsourcing service providers, to launch the Kingdom’s first ever mobile payment service.
The new service uses secure Near Field Communication (NFC) tags to eliminate the need for cash or cards by allowing customers to shop simply by tapping their mobile phones at the checkout counters of participating merchants. The launch marks a key milestone for the Bahrain retail market, potentially revolutionising customer shopping experiences with secure, real-time payments now possible directly from their mobile phone.
To use the new service, customers subscribe for an Ithmaar Bank prepaid eCard at their nearest Batelco shop or Ithmaar Bank branches and receive their NFC tags, which can then be used at participating merchants.
Batelco Bahrain CEO Eng. Muna Al Hashemi stressed on the new service translating Batelco’s drive to introduce the best-in-class digital solutions using cutting-edge technology.
“Batelco has continuously embedded innovation as a central to its strategy with the aim of delivering first class customer experience. This new service is a step forward towards this aim, opening exciting opportunities in the future as technology, digital banking and customers’ needs continue to evolve,” she added.
“Batelco and Ithmaar Bank customers can now enjoy a hassle-free transaction at the partnered retail outlets through this convenient and reliable service.” She added.
Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said the new service builds on the Bank’s history of innovation and its commitment to offering customers a premium Islamic banking experience.
“Ithmaar Bank played a pioneering role in the establishment and subsequent development of Islamic banking in the region,” said Abdul Rahim. “We developed this new service with AFS, the technology provider, in line with our long-standing commitment to continuously improving our products and services, and are pleased to be partnering with Batelco to help make this innovative service available to as many people as possible,” he said.
Arab Financial Services CEO B Chandrasekhar commented, “AFS has been a leader in providing innovative payment services in MENA region for over three decades. We are proud to launch the first of its kind NFC enabled mobile payments solution in Bahrain and are delighted to partner with Batelco and Ithmaar Bank for this service. We have plans to introduce more innovative products to create an enhanced customer experience.”

THE DEVELOPMENT OF NEW WEBSITES OF ITHMAAR HOLDING B.S.C., ITHMAAR BANK B.S.C. (C), AND IB CAPITAL B.S.C. (C) TO REFLECT THE NEW ITHMAAR GROUP STRUCTURE IS UNDER PROGRESS.

The development of new websites of Ithmaar Holding B.S.C., Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (c), and IB Capital B.S.C. (c) to reflect the new Ithmaar Group structure is under progress.
In the interim, the current website will continue to function without any changes until it is enhanced in due course without impacting our services.

Ithmaar Bank B.S.C., a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, announced today (ed note: 020116) that it has obtained final approval from the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), the Kingdom’s banking and financial services regulator on the completion of all requirements with respect to the reorganisation plan. This aims to further develop the growth achieved in Ithmaar Bank’s core retail banking business, the strategic focus of the Bank.

The new structure was proposed by the Bank’s Board of Directors and approved by shareholders at an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) in March 2016. This resulted in the conversion of the existing Commercial Registration into Ithmaar Holding B.S.C. (Ithmaar Holding), which is licensed and regulated by the CBB and continues to be listed on the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait.

Ithmaar Holding retains 100 percent ownership of all assets owned by Ithmaar Bank, through its two wholly-owned subsidiaries: Ithmaar Bank B.S.C (closed) (Ithmaar Bank), an Islamic retail bank subsidiary which holds the core retail banking business, and IB Capital B.S.C. (closed), an investment subsidiary, which holds investments and other non-core assets. The two subsidiaries are licensed and regulated by the CBB.

Following final regulatory and other necessary approvals and the required procedures, the shares will be traded in the name of Ithmaar Holding with the ticker ITHMR

Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, who expressed his thanks and appreciation to the CBB and the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, as well as the Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait for their continued guidance and support, said the new group structure will further consolidate Ithmaar Bank’s position as a strong retail-focussed premier Islamic retail bank under the Ithmaar brand, allowing the Bank to take advantage of new growth opportunities, and help to generate greater value to our shareholders.

“The reorganization is designed to assist in realising our long-term strategy for growth by providing greater insight into the strength of our core retail banking operations and further facilitating the focussed management of the Group’s investment assets,” said Abdul Rahim. “The new structure will help lower the risk profile of the new banking entity and enhance shareholder value through growth and improved performance in the core business,” he said.
”Ithmaar Bank’s mailing address, call centre number, main office telephone number and all other telephone numbers will remain unchanged,” said Abdul Rahim. “Customers can continue to use existing cheque books, debit cards, credit cards, and eCards that bear the trademark of Ithmaar Bank,” he said.

“The financial results consistently show that our efforts to significantly transform the Group’s operations and focus on developing our core business are paying off, and that we are on the right track,” said Abdul Rahim. “The decision to reorganise the Group is the logical step in this process, and underlines our commitment to become one of the region’s leading Islamic retail banks,” he said.
“By allocating our assets into separate subsidiaries, we will be able to better focus on our core retail banking businesses held in Ithmaar Bank, which includes Faysal Bank Limited, Pakistan, a retail and corporate banking subsidiary of Ithmaar Bank. At the same time, we will be able to facilitate dedicated and focussed management of investment and other assets held by IB Capital,” said Abdul Rahim.

Recently, Ithmaar Bank announced it was singled out among the world’s Islamic banks for a prestigious international award in recognition of its Corporate Social Responsibility and Financial Disclosure. The independent award was presented at the World Islamic Banking Conference (WIBC) which was recently held in Bahrain in strategic partnership with the CBB. The WIBC is a high-profile event, which was attended by leading international banking experts, and is widely recognised as one of the most important events on the world Islamic banking calendar.

Contact Us:

Ithmaar Holding B.S.C.:
Telephone: +973 17584000, fax: +973 17584017, Email: info@ithmaarholding.com, P.O. Box: 2820, Seef Tower, Seef District, Kingdom of Bahrain

Shareholder Affairs:
Telephone: +973 17585094, fax: +973 17585133, Email: IR@ithmaarholding.com, P.O. Box: 2820, Seef Tower, Seef District, Kingdom of Bahrain

Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (c):
Call Centre: +973 13303030, Telephone: +973 17585000, fax: +973 17585151, Email: info@ithmaarbank.com, P.O. Box: 2820, Seef Tower, Seef District, Kingdom of Bahrain

IB Capital B.S.C. (c):
Telephone: +973 17568777, fax: +973 17911707, Email: info@ibcapital.co,
P.O. Box: 2820, Seef Tower, Seef District, Kingdom of Bahrain

ITHMAAR HOLDING REPORTS SECOND QUARTER RESULTS

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – 10 August 2017 – Ithmaar Holding BSC (formerly Ithmaar Bank BSC) (Ithmaar) reported today (ed note: 10/08/17) a net loss of US$1.59 million for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017, compared to a net profit of US$11.96 million for the same period last year.
Net loss attributable to equity holders for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017 was US$9.25 million, compared to a net profit of US$4.4 million reported for the same period last year. This included a net loss of US$7.38 million for the three-month period ended 30 June 2017, compared to a net profit of US$7.14 million for the same period last year. Net loss attributable to equity holders for the three-month period ended 30 June 2017 was US$9.82 million, compared to a net profit of US$3.19 million reported for the same period last year.
The announcement, by Ithmaar Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Amr Al Faisal, follows the review and approval, by the Board of Directors, of Ithmaar’s consolidated financial results for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that Ithmaar’s half-year financial results show that the core business continued to grow in 2017,” said HRH Prince Amr. “Although net income, before provision for impairment and overseas taxation, dropped to US$29.83 million for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017, from US$36.67 million for the same period last year, this loss was mainly due to unrealized foreign exchange losses of US$12.5 million, overall income from our core business grew significantly during the same period. This is evident from the increased income from murabaha and other financing which grew by 7.7 percent to US$72.08 million for the six-month period ended 30 June 2017, compared to US$66.9 million for the same period last year, as well as the higher share on income from unrestricted investment accounts as a Mudarib which grew 60.8 percent during the first half of this year to US$34.39 million, compared to US$21.38 million for the same period last year. This is, mainly, a result of the 75 new Islamic retail branches that were opened by Faysal Bank Limited in Pakistan last year,” he said.
Ithmaar Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, said the focus remains firmly on growing the core retail banking business.
“I am pleased to report that the balance sheet is stable and continues to grow,” said Abdul Rahim. “Total assets stood at US$8.72 billion as at 30 June 2017, a 4.5 percent increase compared to US$8.34 billion as at 31 December 2016, and a 2.9 percent increase compared to US$8.47 billion as at 30 June 2016,” he said.
“Customer current accounts also increased to US$1.73 billion as at 30 June 2017, a 9.6 percent

increase compared to US$1.58 billion as at 31 December 2016, and a 15.5 percent increase compared to US$1.5 billion as at 30 June 2016,” said Abdul Rahim. “The equity of unrestricted investment accountholders, at US$2.78 billion as at 30 June 2017, increased by 0.4 percent compared to US$2.77 billion as at 31 December 2016, and by a significant 7.2 percent compared to US$2.59 billion as 30 June 2016,” he said.