Beltone chairman sells stake to Arabiyya Lel Estithmaraat

Reuters, Wednesday 18 Jan 2012

Chairman sells 20 per cent stake in Beltone, announces stock exchange

The chairman of Beltone Financial has agreed to sell his 20 per cent stake in the Egyptian investment bank to Arabiyya Lel Estithmaraat (AIC), the stock exchange said on Wednesday.

"It was agreed that AIC will buy 20 per cent of the company's (Beltone) shares owned by the chairman," the bourse said in a statement. AIC is an Egyptian investment firm.

AIC said in an emailed statement that it paid 16 pounds per share, which would value the sale at 26.8 million Egyptian pounds ($4.44 million).

Beltone's stock, which had been suspended earlier in the session, resumed trading at 14 pounds per share. AIC's stock was trading 1.8 per cent higher and the benchmark index was up 0.9 per cent.

Beltone said last month its chairman -  Aladdin Saba - was in talks to sell his stake in the bank, while AIC said it was seeking to buy the stakes of several Beltone shareholders.

Egyptian investment banks were hit especially hard after foreign investors pulled out of the country and trade on the stock exchange slumped in the wake of the uprising that ousted President Hosni Mubarak in February.

According to Reuters data, Beltone has a market capitalisation of 117 million pounds. As of June 30, Saba owned 19.99 per cent.

Saba could not be immediately reached for comment. ($1 = 6.0420 Egyptian pounds)

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