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United Gulf Bank (UGB, the Bank) is a leading asset management, merchant and investment banking group, with operations spanning the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. It is licensed as a conventional wholesale bank by the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB). From its home base in the Kingdom of Bahrain, and through its regional network of affiliates, the Bank engages primarily in asset and fund management, merchant banking, private equity, and corporate finance. Other financial business activities include commercial banking, proprietary investments, treasury, brokerage, and savings and pensions. Through its nonfinancial associate companies, the Bank holds substantial investments in the real estate, industrial and communications sectors.
UGB was established as an offshore commercial bank in March 1980. It was initially incorporated as a closed Bahraini shareholding company with an authorised capital of US$ 150 million and paid up capital of US$ 74.5 million. In October 1981, the authorised and paid up capital was increased to US$ 250 million and US$ 200 million respectively, through a public offering of its shares. In 1988, 94 percent of the Bank's equity was acquired by Kuwait Investment Projects Company (KIPCO) and in the same year the Bank was licensed as an offshore investment bank. In 1999, KIPCO changed its legal structure to that of a holding company and its name to Kuwait Projects Company (Holding). The majority of UGB's shares continue to be held by KIPCO. Under the Central Bank of Bahrain's amended licensing framework adopted in July 2006, UGB's former offshore banking license was replaced with a wholesale banking license.
UGB’s shares are listed on the Bahrain Bourse .
UGB and its subsidiary KIPCO Asset Management Company (KAMCO), Kuwait, have a proven track record of successfully completing around 60 investment banking transactions for their clients since 2001 with an aggregate value of over US$ 7.5 billion including corporate finance, advisory, new issue placement and underwriting, corporate restructuring, bond issuance and merger and acquisition.
The KIPCO Group is one of the largest holding companies in the Middle East and North Africa, with consolidated assets of US$ 26 billion. The Group has significant ownership interests in a portfolio of more than 60 companies operating across 24 countries. The Group’s main business sectors are financial services, media, manufacturing and real estate. Through its core companies, subsidiaries and affiliates, KIPCO also has interests in the education and healthcare sectors.