Bahrain: Best Domestic Bank 2021
Al Salam Bank Bahrain
The pandemic didn’t knock Bahrain’s fastest-growing bank, Al Salam Bank Bahrain, off course. With chief executive Rafik Nayed in the hot seat, the bank increased its market share across all businesses, particularly customer deposits and financing facilities, in 2020.
Al Salam Bank recorded roughly 19% increases in customer deposits and financing facilities, year on year, and managed to increase total assets by 11% to about $6 billion. The bank also improved asset quality last year, with its non-performing facilities ratio decreasing to 5.05%, stacking up well versus peers.
The bank was established in 2006 and has since evolved into a regional force in Islamic finance, thanks to acquisitions as well as organic growth. In 2011, it merged with Bahraini Saudi Bank. In 2014, it acquired BMI Bank as a wholly owned subsidiary. Since then, the firm has carved out a strong place in the market, making it Asiamoney’s best domestic bank in Bahrain.
Al Salam Bank, naturally, built its reputation by launching innovative Shariah-compliant products. On the back of that status as a market pioneer, it signed an agreement in July 2020 with the Bahrain Bourse and the Central Bank of Bahrain to offer new and creative Shariah-compliant brokerage services.