Baker McKenzie is advising Saudi Arabian listed bank Alawwal bank, whose largest shareholder is a consortium made up of RBS, Santander and a Dutch governmental entity, on its merger with fellow Saudi listed bank, The Saudi British Bank (“SABB”), whose largest shareholder is HSBC. The share for share merger has a deal value of approximately US$4.9 billion, making it the first of its kind in Saudi Arabia between two listed banks and one of the largest mergers of two Saudi listed companies.

The complex deal is the first merger being undertaken under the recently over-hauled Merger and Acquisition Regulations. The merger agreement has now been signed and the deal is expected to close during the first half of 2019. The merger will create Saudi Arabia’s third largest bank with assets of around US$70 billion.

Corporate partner Mohammad Al Rasheed said: “We are very pleased to advise Alawwal bank on this ground-breaking transaction which is a testament to the depth of our corporate practice in the Middle East. Achieving this important milestone would not have been possible without the support and cooperation of the relevant regulators in the Kingdom and the new regulatory regime which facilitates these types of complex transactions. We hope this transaction will encourage other companies to undertake public M&A transactions in the Kingdom. We look forward to continuing to assist Alawwal bank until the successful completion of the transaction.”

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Mohammad Al Rasheed is a partner in our UAE/Saudi Arabian Corporate & Securities practice, specialising in mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings and private placements. Mohammad has worked on transactions in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for more than 10 years, and has developed an in-depth knowledge of the Saudi Arabian market. Although based in the UAE, his practice is split between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

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