January 14, 2020
Fajr Capital has today announced the sale of its significant minority stake in Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam (“BIBD”), Brunei’s largest bank and flagship financial services institution, to Brunei Investment Agency (or “BIA”).
Fajr Capital invested in BIBD in September 2010 with a commitment to transform the financially sound and stable bank into a world-class financial services institution. After closing the acquisition, and strengthening BIBD’s corporate governance and management team, Fajr Capital worked alongside BIBD’s shareholders to devise and begin implementation of a new value creation and growth strategy. The transformation resulted in enhanced customer experience through a new brand identity and a redesign of the branch network, introduction of internet banking and new digital platforms, international expansion in South East Asia and the Middle East, and improved financial performance with the bank’s net income more than doubling during Fajr Capital’s investment holding period.
This transaction marks another successful exit for Fajr Capital, following several recent high-profile divestments, including GEMS Education, National Petroleum Services, and other significant assets in the Middle East.
Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II, as Chairman of BIBD, said: “Alhamdulillah, BIBD’s transformation has positioned the bank to greater heights with international, regional, and industry accolades and recognition, including a consistent A- (Stable) rating from Standard & Poor’s. The bank has achieved a commendable dividend payout which is as good as or better than regional players. There has been a remarkable improvement in corporate governance and accounting standards. BIBD’s transformation has benefitted the bank’s customers, employees and shareholders, and contributed significantly to local business growth and job creation in the country. BIA’s investment in BIBD will continue to build on Fajr Capital’s good work. We are excited to usher the bank to its next phase of growth and evolution. BIA’s experience in portfolio management activities and global investments will definitely help to grow the bank in the years to come.”
“Fajr Capital’s long-term and successful investment in BIBD validates our investment thesis and demonstrates our commitment to the markets and communities we serve,” added Dato Paduka Iqbal Khan, Chief Executive Officer of Fajr Capital. “BIBD was our inaugural and flagship investment and we are very pleased to have supported the bank’s transformation during the past decade. I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to the Government of Brunei Darussalam, the Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam, the BIBD Board of Directors, the bank’s employees, and BIBD’s customers for their unwavering support, commitment, and trust.
“BIBD is an example of Fajr Capital’s ability to structure attractive investment opportunities, develop and enable strong management teams, and support ‘domestic champions’ in their growth trajectory by creating enduring strategic, operational and financial value. Islamic financial services remains an important pillar of our investment strategy. We look forward to continue investing in high-growth and high-impact opportunities across our target sectors.”