Islamic bank honored for ‘UAE Deal of the Year’ & ‘Syndicated Deal of the Year’

February 25, 2014

Al Hilal Bank emerged as one of the most awarded institutions at the 2013 Islamic Finance News (IFN) Awards organized by Islamic Finance News – the world’s leading Islamic finance news provider. The bank received ‘UAE Deal of the Year’ and ‘Syndicated Deal of the Year’ honors under the ‘Deals of the Year’ category during simple awarding rites held yesterday (Monday, February 24, 2014) at Ritz Carlton DIFC, Dubai, UAE.

Nearly 400 deals for 2013 were nominated in over 30 categories in the latest IFN Awards Deals of the Year, representing a 33 per cent increase in the number of nominations and a 20 per cent increase in categories over 2012. Al Hilal Bank bagged the ‘UAE Deal of the Year’ for its USD 750 million Sukuk for the Dubai Department of Finance (DOF) and ‘Syndicated Deal of the Year’ for providing a USD 340 million ‘Ijarah’ facility for Gulf Marine Services.

Al Hilal Bank was among the Co-Lead Managers of the USD 750 million Dubai DOF Sukuk issued on behalf of the Government of Dubai in late January 2013. The swiftly executed deal yielded attractive pricing on the unrated 10-year Reg S Sukuk. The transaction was oversubscribed by 12 times – a successful start for Dubai’s bid to become the capital of the Islamic economy. It continues to support growing investor confidence in the emirate.

The Ijarah transaction, on the other hand, was structured to provide a flexible secured facility for Gulf Marine Services and to provide for future cash needs – a feature that is uncommon in Murabaha deals. It re-profiled the company’s existing debt into a multi-tranche facility, funded a USD 80 million dividend, financed expansion, and met current working capital requirements. Al Hilal Bank was one of the Arrangers for the complex transaction.

“Al Hilal Bank facilitated a number of major deals in 2013 which helped us maintain our industry leadership and broaden the appeal of Islamic banking products and services. These two awards are a great way to start off this year and provide strong motivation for us to be involved in more important Islamic banking deals locally, regionally and internationally,” said Mohamed Jamil Berro, the Group CEO of Al Hilal Bank.

Al Hilal Bank has received numerous awards for fostering innovation, excellence and sustainability across its products, services and operations. The bank performed exceptionally well in 2013, which saw the institution receive an A1 rating by Moody’s Investors Service and an A+ rating by Fitch Ratings – the highest ratings awarded so far to an Islamic bank in the UAE. Al Hilal was also recently named the ‘Safest Islamic Bank in the UAE’ and second in the entire Gulf by Global Finance magazine in its first-ever list of the ‘Safest Islamic Banks in the GCC.’

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