Awards for Excellence 2008: Egypt
Best bank: Arab African International Bank
Best equity house: EFG Hermes
Best M&A house: Citi
Egypt has one of the highest GDPs in the Middle East. But compared with the other big economies of the region – Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Iran – its consumer banking industry has lagged behind.
The two banks that are doing most to change that are Arab African International Bank (AAIB) and Commercial International Bank (CIB). The contest between these two banks is always close in the Euromoney best bank award for Egypt. In fact, the two banks were in discussions about a potential merger earlier in the year, although talks have now been broken off.
This year the award goes to AAIB because it posted higher growth statistics than CIB in almost every category. For example, AAIB’s customer deposits grew by 43% in 2007; those of CIB grew by 22%. CIB’s loan book grew by 17% last year, but AAIB managed to grow its loan book by more than twice that percentage. AAIB’s net profit grew by 66% in 2007, while CIB’s grew by 54%.