UAE bank’s bid for Egypt’s ‘national champion’ EFG may be too low

The United Arab Emirates’ biggest lender may have to raise its bid to take a controlling stake in Egypt’s top investment bank EFG Hermes (HRHO.CA) given the latter’s outsized influence over Egypt’s financial markets and supercharged growth of its fintech businesses, industry players say.

FAB (FAB.AD) this month made a non-binding offer to buy at least 51% of EFG Hermes for 19 Egyptian pounds ($1.21) per share, which valued the Egyptian bank at nearly $1.2 billion, but most analysts value EFG in the 25-28 pounds range, as much as 47% above the current offer.

EFG controls roughly a third of traded volumes on Egypt’s stock exchange. Its size almost guarantees it a leading role on top deals in the country, including a planned pipeline of initial public offerings in state or military-owned companies.

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