of Bahrain s first-ever Rule 144A issue. The bond achieved truly global distribution, with US, European, Middle Eastern and Asian investors.
In 2012, BNP Paribas was appointed as joint book runner and lead manager for fixed rate sukuk for the Kingdom of Bahrain. The final order book was comprised of a pool of over 100 high-quality sukuk and conventional investors, mainly from the Middle East, Asia and Europe.
Following the successful first sovereign bond issue in 2003, BNP Paribas began to play a growing role in financing the Kingdom of Bahrain s financial institutions. It served as lead arranger and book runner on multiple important debt issues and financing facilities for local banks from 2005 to 2007, including one facility that was the largest of its kind at the time for any bank in the Middle East.
The Bahrain Financial Harbour
In November 2008, the regional head office moved to Bahrain Financial Harbour, another milestone for the Bank s Gulf division. Increased business throughout the region required the move and saw the regional headquarters put down its roots in a location which symbolised, both in its name and its vibrant architecture, the ambitions and new ways of working, which the BNP Paribas regional strategy has come to represent. Both the Bank s regional head office and the Full Commercial Branch moved into the building, making BNP Paribas its largest tenant, with the Bank occupying six floors of the West Tower.
The inauguration of this impressive new base of operations was attended by H.E. Rasheed Mohammed Al Maraj, Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain, and Jean-Jacques Santini, Global Head of BNP Paribas International Retail Services Emerging Markets, alongside a number of other guests of honour.
H.E. Rasheed Mohammed Al Maraj, the Governor of Bahrain s Central Bank, highlighted BNP Paribas role in the Kingdom of Bahrain s evolution as a financial centre: This occasion reflects the importance that BNP Paribas places on the development of its business in the Gulf region and an acknowledgement of the role that the Kingdom of Bahrain, as the leading financial centre in the region, plays in that development. At the Central Bank of Bahrain, we are actively working to ensure our regulation continues to provide a strong platform for region-wide growth, while developments such as the Bahrain Financial Harbour allow us to meet the constantly-evolving infrastructure needs of the financial sector. These new premises are the physical expression of the success that BNP Paribas has enjoyed in this region for the past thirty-three years.
Also speaking at the event, Jean-Christophe Durand, BNP Paribas CEO for the Middle East and Africa for Corporate & Investment Banking, explained the importance of the Bahrain operation to the Bank.
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