NBAD confirms departure of four senior staff amid FBG merger

The deputy chief executive and several senior managing directors no longer work at the bank, which declined to elaborate on why they had left.

Four executives have left NBAD, the bank confirmed on Thursday. The bank's merger with FGB is expected to gain authorities' approvals this quarter. Silvia Razgova / The National
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The National Bank of Abu Dhabi confirmed on Thursday that four of its senior managers had left amid a merger of the bank with its closest competitor in the Emirate, FGB.

The departures of Abdulla AbdulRaheem, the deputy chief executive, Qamber Al Mulla, the senior managing director, and senior managing directors Saif Al Shehhi and Abdulla Al Otaiba was first reported by Reuters last week.

A spokesperson for the bank declined to elaborate on the reasons behind the departures but the merger, which was approved by shareholders of both banks on December 7, was done in part to cut down on costs by removing duplicate posts and sharing resources.

The combination has also been approved by the Central Bank of the UAE but requires further approval from international regulators and the Securities and Commodities Authority.

These are expected towards the end of the first quarter of this year, the banks said last month.

The move is expected to produce cost savings of about Dh500 million a year from 2019, according to research from the Egyptian investment bank EFG-Hermes.

Even though NBAD, the biggest bank by assets in the UAE, has made headway in building its consumer banking business, it will get a boost from joining forces with FGB, which has more loans to individuals on its books.

FGB’s retail book is about 40 per cent of its total loans, while NBAD’s consumer lending portfolio makes up just 17 per cent of its outstanding loans.

Investors have backed the combination, especially as NBAD is considered one of the safest banks in the world; its high credit ratings will allow it to borrow money cheaply on behalf of the new entity, which will have assets of US$178 billion, making it one of the largest in the Middle East and North Africa.

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