* U.S.-based Citigroup Inc. appointed Raymond Gatcliffe its commercial banking head for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Reuters reported. Based in London, Gatcliffe will report to Sunil Garg, global head of Citi Commercial Bank, and David Livingstone, EMEA CEO.
GULF COOPERATION COUNCIL
* Banque Saudi Fransi's second-quarter net profit fell to 804 million Saudi Arabian riyals from the year-ago 841 million riyals. For the first half, the bank reported net profit of 1.72 billion riyals, down year over year from 1.89 billion riyals.
* First Investment Co. KSCP appointed Nourhan Darwish Alissa head of risk management.
REST OF MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA
* The IPO of Egypt-based Fawry for Banking Technology and Electronic Payments SAE was 30.3x oversubscribed, Reuters reported. The firm priced the offering at 6.46 pounds per share, aiming to list 36% of its capital to raise some 1.6 billion pounds in the IPO.
* The shareholders of Egypt-based Beltone Financial Holding SAE approved a plan to increase the firm's capital to 898.4 million pounds from 338.08 million pounds through the issuance of 280.18 million shares at a nominal value of 2 pounds apiece, Mubasher reported.
* Italian asset manager Azimut Holding SpA is poised to complete its acquisition of Rasmala Egypt Asset Management SAE from U.K.-based Rasmala Plc by mid-August after obtaining regulatory approval, Amwal Al Ghad reported, citing Ahmed Abou el-Saad, Rasmala chairman and managing director.
* Iran's central bank again pushed back the launched of the regulated foreign exchange market, which was initially slated to be launched Aug.12, due to technical issues, Financial Tribune reported, citing Fars News Agency. The new opening date for the market is yet to be disclosed.
* Compagnie Générale du Faso acquired a 5% stake in Tunisia-based Banque Nationale Agricole, according to Financial Afrik.
EAST AND WEST AFRICA
* Equity Bank (Kenya) Ltd. named Gerald Warui its new managing director, subject to central bank approval. Warui will replace Polycarp Igathe, who will step down at the end of the month to become vice president for sales and marketing in Africa at U.K.-based Vivo Energy PLC, Business Daily Africa noted.
* Nigeria's central bank has mandated lending firms to require clients to submit their credit history before granting them loans, The Punch reported. The new regulations, which are under the central bank's consumer protection guidelines on responsible business conduct, will apply to commercial banks, merchant banks, micro-finance banks, credit bureaus, among others.
* Union Bank of Nigeria PLC issued a 10-year bond amounting to 30 billion naira, according to Reuters. The issuance forms part of the bank's 100 billion naira bond program.
* Ecobank Transnational Inc. named Nana Abban group consumer banking head, effective immediately. Abban will also become a group executive committee member and report to group CEO Ade Ayeyemi.
CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN AFRICA
* Fitch Ratings acted on five South African banks and four holding companies, including Absa Group Ltd., Investec Ltd., Nedbank Group Ltd. and Standard Bank Group Ltd., following the revision of the outlook on the country's long-term issuer default ratings to negative from stable.
* Sabso, the biggest financial union in South Africa, threatened that its 73,000 members would go on a two-day strike next month targeting banks that have consulted employees over job cuts, Bloomberg News wrote, citing Joe Kokela, the union's general secretary. The union is asking lenders to explore options other than retrenchments and to re-train employees at risk of getting laid off.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD
Asia-Pacific: US labels China a currency manipulator; ANZ drops staff bonuses
Europe: HSBC CEO resigns; ReAssure, Quilter reach £425M deal; UBI Q2 profit down 46.6%
Latin America: Caixa confirms search for card biz partner; BNDES to return additional 40B reais
North America: Fox to buy 67% stake in Credible Labs; Wells Fargo ups litigation loss range
Global Insurance: Berkshire earnings up; Fairfax eyes organic growth; ReAssure in £425M deal
Deza Mones, Henni Abdelghani, Pádraig Belton and Helen Popper contributed to this report.
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