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Business

March 18, 2009

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Unicorn invests further Rs1bn in Dawood Islamic Bank

Unicorn invests further Rs1bn in Dawood Islamic Bank
KARACHI: Dawood Islamic Bank Limited (DIBL) has received Rs1 billion (US$12.9 million) investment from Bahrain-based Unicorn Investment Bank Limited.

Unicorn already had a 22.2 per cent equity stake in DIBL prior to the current investment, said a press release released by DIBL on Tuesday.

Managing Director and Global Private Equity Head of Unicorn Investment Bank and founder director of DIBL, Aamir Khan said that the decision to invest in Dawood Islamic Bank at a time when global confidence in financial institutions is at its lowest, is based on excellent opportunities that are available in the Islamic banking sector of Pakistan.

He said that the stake in DIBL provides Unicorn with access to the Pakistani market with its 160 million inhabitants, 97 per cent of whom are Muslims.

The investment by Unicorn would further boost the ability of DIBL to provide support to trade and industry through its various Riba-free banking products, said DIBL Chairman Rafique Dawood.

The interest of Unicorn in DIBL reflects the strength of Islamic banking system of Pakistan, which has withstood the current turmoil in global financial markets, proving to the world that Shariah-complaint financing is more transparent and trustworthy.

Islamic deposits represented 4 per cent of the total deposits in Pakistan in 2008, but this figure is projected to reach 10 per cent or approximately $13 billion by 2014.

DIBL was launched in 2007 with an initial paid-up capital of Rs3 billion. It is operated strictly in compliance with the principles of Shariah and its products are subject to the approval of its Shariah board headed by renowned Islamic scholar Professor Mufti Muneeb ur Rehman.

DIBL has a network of 21 branches spread over the major cities of Pakistan including Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Faisalabad, Multan, Sialkot, Iqbalabad and Joharabad.

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