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Mizuho (Japan) Expands into Saudi Arabia

16 Jan 2018 - Mizuho Financial Group Inc. hired GIB Capital LLC banker Khalid Al Ghamdi to head its Saudi Arabia business as the bank seeks to expand in the kingdom.

Al Ghamdi, a Saudi national who was previously acting chief executive officer and head of investment banking at Riyadh-based GIB Capital, will become managing director and executive board member at Mizuho, the lender said in an emailed statement. He will be responsible for expanding the bank’s operations in areas such as financing, capital markets and advisory.

Japanese lenders are seeking opportunities in Saudi Arabia as the country pursues a plan to reduce dependence on oil and diversify its economy through public-sector restructuring and infrastructure investment.

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. is also looking to hire in the kingdom to benefit from privatizations it estimates at more than $350 billion over the next five years.

“The appointment of Khalid represents a significant milestone in the expansion of Mizuho franchise in Saudi Arabia and further indicates our commitment to the Kingdom,” Hidefumi Takeuchi, head of Mizuho in the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia, said in the statement.

Mizuho, which has a Capital Market Authority license in the kingdom, wants to take on more advisory roles in connection with Saudi Arabia’s privatization plans and potential mergers and acquisitions, Takeuchi said in a 2016 interview. Mizuho and two other Tokyo-based lenders — MUFJ and Mitsui Financial Group Inc. — signed a nonbinding agreement with Saudi Aramco that year to cooperate on business.

Al Ghamdi started his career in the U.K. before moving to Saudi Arabia in 2003, according to the statement. His appointment is subject to regulatory approval, the bank said.

The Japan Times



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