GFH's second quarter net profit soars on exit income

The Bahrain-based Sharia-compliant firm says net profit reached $30.1m

Hisham Alrayes, chief executive of GFH, says income from investment exits helped lift second quarter net profit. Razan Alzayani / The National
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GFH Financial Group, the Bahrain-based Sharia-compliant investment firm, said on Sunday its second quarter net profit rose more than 400 per cent, thanks to income from investment exits.

Net profit attributable to equity holders in the three months ending in June reached US$30.2 million, compared with $5.5m for thesame period last year.

Consolidated net profit for second quarter rose to $32m from $7.9m in the year-earlier period.

“During the quarter we have been able to achieve excellent exits from our real estate and education portfolio which made substantial contribution to our revenue stream,” said Hisham Alrayes, chief executive of GFH. “We have also been able to achieve some recoveries from our debt portfolio, which has contributed to our overall income as well.”

Fitch in July upgraded its rating for GFH to B from B-, five steps below investment-grade, with a positive outlook, owning to the company's settlement of legal cases last year.

GFH settled last year a number of cases filed against former executives, including two ex-chairmen. GFH, which had liabilities of over $1 billion in 2008, has gone through numerous debt restructurings and is currently in an acquisition and expansion phase.

“Regarding our plan for strategic acquisitions and following shareholders’ approval earlier this year, we have been able to achieve major acquisitions for the benefit of our infrastructure portfolio and increased the capital of the bank with a premium to our shareholders,” said Mr Alrayes. “With the current pace of performance, we expect to end the year with a record achievement and maintain distribution of dividends to the market.”

The Abu Dhabi Financial Group, an alternative investment company with $5bn in assets, is the largest shareholder in GFH.


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