Awards for Excellence 2009: Morocco
Best Bank: Attijariwafa
In Morocco, BMCE and Attijariwafa have led the way in expanding in the rest of Africa. BMCE, for example, has acquired or set up operations, sometimes through its London-based investment bank, Medicapital, in about 20 African countries in the past few years.
In 2008, BMCE and Attijariwafa grew profits by between one-third and a half. BMCE’s profit growth was higher, but Attijariwafa’s total profit was still about double that of BMCE, a smaller bank. Moreover, Attijariwafa, which previously had operations in Tunisia, Mali and Senegal, initiated an ambitious agreement with France’s Crédit Agricole late last year.
Attijariwafa will acquire Crédit Agricole’s retail banking network in Africa. It will gain banks in Cameroon, Congo-Brazzaville, Côte d’Ivoire, Gabon and Senegal, with total assets of more than €1 billion. Attijariwafa will be the owner of the largest bank in Senegal.
In return, Crédit Agricole acquired an extra 24% share (adding to its existing majority stake) in a Moroccan insurance firm that is partly owned by Attijariwafa.