• Ranked sixth for capital adequacy

Manama: Al Salam Bank-Bahrain (Al Salam Bank) has achieved the highest reduction in non-performing financing (NPF) amongst fifty five GCC listed banks in 2019, according to a report by KPMG. The Bank also ranked sixth in the region for Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR), with a strong standing of 20.9 per cent. This makes Al Salam Bank the only Islamic bank from Bahrain to make the regional list of top 10 banks for a strong CAR and a marked reduction in non-performing financing, which fell by 3.3 per cent.

Rafik Nayed, Al Salam Bank-Bahrain Group CEO attributed the bank’s success to its revised strategy: “We have refined and refocused our strategy towards core business activities and the development and enhancement of revenue streams,” Mr. Nayed said. “Ultimately, Al Salam Bank’s impressive growth in CAR and the commendable reduction in NPFs is owed to our robust risk management culture coupled with the efficient management of our financing portfolio and balance sheet.  We have grown these by 30% and 19% respectively, through our consistent and unwavering pursuit of high-quality assets offering superior risk-adjusted returns.”

The rankings were featured in KPMG’s latest GCC Listed Banks’ Results Report, which analysed the financial results of fifty five listed commercial banks from each GCC country throughout 2019. Banks across the entire region posted impressive results, reflecting the continued resilience of the GCC banking sector, and highlighting the strength of Al Salam Bank’s achievements.

The report notes that the region’s positive results were coupled with an increased focus on digitisation, which has resulted in banks moving toward a more innovative, technology-driven approach: “It is clear that banks that have been, and will continue to be, more nimble, agile and responsive to the digital agenda, will succeed in the long term. This has become even more apparent in the current crisis where branches are closed, face-to-face contact is limited, and the demand for digital banking channels has soared,” wrote Omar Mahmood, KPMG Head of Finance for the Middle East and South Asia region, and Reyaz Mihular, KPMG Chairman for the Middle East and South Asia region.

With its often-pioneering, tech-focused initiatives, Al Salam Bank has come to be recognised as one of the key institutions driving the digitisation of financial services – both Islamic and global – in Bahrain. The Kingdom is a regional leader in this regard and boasts the region’s oldest and most established banking sector. Al Salam Bank is continuing the successful roll-out of its three-year strategy, focused on giving customers a choice of innovative Shari’a-compliant banking solutions, including a virtual branch and an onboarding app that enables clients to open their accounts within minutes. 

Mr. Nayed added: “We are pleased that the KPMG report highlighted the importance of continued customer focus through innovation – one of its key predictions for 2020 – and noted that the banks that will succeed in an increasingly digital and post-COVID world are those that are agile, flexible and willing to transform their business models. At Al Salam Bank we pride ourselves on our customer-centric, pioneering and innovative approach, the results of which have been reflected in our performance.”

These initiatives have also been recognised by prestigious US-based finance magazine Global Finance, naming Al Salam Bank the best Islamic Bank in Bahrain for the second year in a row. In awarding the title, the publication pointed to the Bank’s wide range of cutting-edge products, strong balance sheet and growing asset base.

The KPMG report can be viewed at https://bit.ly/2UJQF2F 


About Al Salam Bank-Bahrain:

Al Salam Bank-Bahrain is a pioneering Shari’a-compliant Bank in Bahrain. It offers a comprehensive range of innovative and unique financial products and services through its extended network of branches and ATMs, which employ state-of-art technologies to meet its clients’ various banking needs. In addition to its Retail Banking services, the Bank offers Corporate Banking, Private Banking, Asset Management, International Transaction Banking as well as Treasury Services. The Bank’s high-caliber management team comprises of a highly qualified and internationally experienced professionals with proven expertise in key areas of banking, finance and related fields.

The Bank has received multiple awards, including:

  • “Best Islamic Retail Bank in Bahrain for the year 2019 and 2018”, “Best Shari’a Compliant Product in Bahrain for 2019” and “Most Innovative Shari’a Compliant Products in Bahrain for 2018” awarded by Global Business Outlook,
  • The Enterprise Excellence award in the field of training and national manpower development at the 34th annual ceremony organized by the Ministry of Labour and Social Development.
  • The “Critics’ Choice award – The Best Islamic Retail Bank in Bahrain for 2017” by Cambridge IFA– a UK-based Islamic finance intelligence provider specialising in strategic advice in the field of financial services and professional academic research for financial institutions.
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