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Qatari firm takes majority stake in Banif Bank (Malta)

Qatar-basedAl Faisal International for Investment acquired a 78.46% stake in from avehicle created to manage assets belonging to Portuguese lender .  

Thecompletion of the acquisition from Oitante SA followed approval by the ECB andthe Malta Financial Services Authority. The remaining 21.52% of Banif Bank(Malta) is held equally by four Maltese shareholders.

Nosale price was indicated, although Banif-Banco Internacional do Funchalsaid in December 2015that it had reached an agreement to sell the bank for a price equivalent to itsbook value of €18.4 million.

AlFaisal International for Investment, a unit of Al Faisal Holding Co., willappoint three nonexecutive directors to the bank's 11-member board. Theacquisition is its first investment in the European financial services sector,and it said it plans to make further investments in Malta across a number ofsectors. It also owns a 7.33% stake in Qatar-based , according to SNL Financial data.

AlFaisal Holding is chaired by Qatari billionaire Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani.

Banif-BancoInternacional do Funchal was placed into resolution in December 2015, with mostof its assets and liabilities transferred to Banco Santander SA's Banco Santander Totta SA.