Four Charts That Show the Impact of Saudi Arabia's New Mega Bank
(Bloomberg) -- Two of Saudi Arabia’s biggest banks are exploring a merger that will dwarf their competitors and could prompt other lenders to combine and fight for market share in the oil-rich kingdom.
The proposed merger of National Commercial Bank and Riyad Bank, the first and fourth biggest Saudi banks, would create an institution with $182 billion in assets. The giant lender could gain an edge against local and foreign rivals in an economy that continues to suffer from tight liquidity following the plunge in oil prices in 2014.
Here is look at the impact of the possible merger in four charts:
Syndicated loans in Saudi Arabia are dominated by foreign institutions, including Japanese banks and global firms like Citigroup Inc., HSBC Holdings Plc and Standard Chartered Plc. The government plans to lean on local lenders to borrow $32 billion next year to bridge its budget deficit, and the larger ones are poised to reap a greater slice of both public and private debt.
The possible merger of NCB and Riyad Bank could also trim costs and boost competitiveness of the new lender. The combined bank’s considerable size advantage and state-backing should also help it win business from the government which dominates the kingdom’s economy.
The new bank will control about 30 percent of the Saudi loan market, a lead that could increase pressure on smaller Saudi banks to consolidate. Other lenders are already considering mergers. HSBC’s Saudi unit plans to buy Alawwal Bank, which is backed by Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc, in a $5 billion deal.
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