Rating reflects bank's leading position despite its young age

KUWAIT: Fitch Ratings affirmed Warba Bank's credit rating with a stable outlook on Long-Term Issuer Default Rating (IDRs) which is in line with its Support Rating Floor (SRF) of A+ which reflect the high credit quality and low risk of default.

For Viability Rating "VR", Fitch rated Warba Bank at (BB-) which reflects the increasing market share (4.4 percent) in terms of assets by the end of the first half of the financial year 2019. Fitch Report appraised the Bank's efficient and professional management team and business model adopted by the bank targeting the corporate sector and seize opportunities in the real-estate sector, which in return supported market share growth.

Fitch report underlines that Warba Bank has successfully issued a $250 million perpetual Tier 1 sukuk in March 2017 and Capital Increase of a KD90 million rights issue in 2018 to boost its total capital adequacy ratio.
The report stated that the Bank's financing portfolio mostly goes to corporate and that the Bank's main depositors are governmental and semi-governmental entities in addition to some of the largest stable companies, which reflects positively on the risk profile and the ability to keep it contained by the experienced management team leading the Bank.

Commenting on the ratings affirmation, Shaheen Hamad Alghanem - Warb Bank's CEO- said: "the Bank is proud that Fitch affirms the Bank's rating at A+ despite the conditions and challenges facing the global financial sector. Warba Bank - despite its young age- has become champion in the Islamic Banking Sector capable of accomplishing several achievements in the Kuwaiti banking sector. This clearly underlines our successful strategy through which we aim to present creative Islamic banking services & products according to international standards giving customers exciting banking experience; developing our financing portfolio and expanding our business geographically, -seizing lucrative investment opportunities; and keeping pace with the current trend of the digital banking operations especially the customers daily financial deals".

He added: "Since its inception, Warba Bank has been keen to stand out amongst competitors. The Bank has been able in a short period of time to gain customer's trust - locally and globally- due to our out-of-the-box banking products and services that met their expectations and needs. This also led to establishing our own digital factory "Al-Wateen" which will serve as the crucible base from which all our digital services and products will be launched to enable us provide our customers with fast, flexible, accessible, time and energy -saving banking experience ".

Alghanem stressed that the Bank is proceeding and pursuing the Bank's promising plan to steer more achievements and expansion on domestic, regional and international levels. He said that the Bank strategy embeds further diversifications in its investment portfolio, out of which Warba aims at offering customers the best investment and banking options in compliance with Islamic Sharia.