The government of Sharjah — one of the emirates of the United Arab Emirates — is considering merging Invest Bank PSC and United Arab Bank PJSC with Bank of Sharjah PJSC, in which it holds a 17.2% stake, Reuters reported, citing sources aware of the matter.
The potential three-way merger would create a bank with assets of approximately 66.2 billion dirhams, according to the Sept. 27 report.
Bank of Sharjah and Invest Bank have been in on-and-off discussions about a potential merger since 2016, sources told Reuters in November 2017. The government is now planning to merge the three banks to achieve economies of scale, one of the sources said, adding that Bank of Sharjah, which is the biggest of the three, could buy the other two lenders.
Bank of Sharjah is being advised by JPMorgan on the potential deal, the sources added.
The news comes after UAE peer Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC confirmed earlier in September that it is in early talks with Union National Bank – PJSC and Al Hilal Bank PJSC about a potential three-way tie-up. The potential transaction could create a combined entity with assets of around $110 billion, Bloomberg News previously reported.