Under the patronage of H.E. Fahad Almubarak, governor of the Saudi Central Bank, Standard Chartered celebrated the official first branch in the Kingdom virtually. This comes as SAMA granted the license to Standard Chartered in order to practice banking activities in the Kingdom.
The ceremony was attended by José Viñals, chairman of Standard Chartered Bank, Bill Winters, Standard Chartered Group CEO, Sunil Kaushal, regional CEO for Africa and Middle East (AME), and Yazaid Al-Salloom, CEO of Standard Chartered Saudi Arabia. In addition, a number of officials from the Saudi Central Bank and Standard Chartered Bank’s international top clients attended the ceremony.
At the beginning of the ceremony, Standard Chartered bank explored ways to support the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 that focuses on economic development and infrastructural projects, facilitating trade flows across international markets, digitisation, sustainable finance and investing in the development of Saudi talent.
Commenting on this occasion, H.E. Fahad Almubarak, governor of the Saudi Central Bank, said: “I am pleased to welcome Standard Chartered bank to carry on banking business in the Saudi banking sector. I wish all the best for the bank to success and provide the desired value proposition to the sector, by providing banking services and products to micro, small and medium enterprises, and providing innovations in the aspects that characterize the bank, especially financial technology.”.
Sunil Kaushal, regional CEO of Africa & the Middle East at Standard Chartered, said: “We are honoured to have our first-ever branch in Saudi Arabia under the patronage of Fahad Almubarak, Governor of the Saudi Central Bank. The Saudi market represents a valuable opportunity for Standard Chartered to contribute to boosting trade, investment and capital flows in order to support Kingdom’s Vision 2030 under the guidance of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud and His Royal Highness Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Our network across 59 countries had finally landed in the Kingdom. Thus, our strategy in the Kingdom is centred on engaging with well-established global corporates, subsidiaries and financial institutions, as well as providing services to support strategic transactions that can further contribute to the Kingdom’s market.”
Yazaid Al Salloom, CEO Standard Chartered KSA, said ‘I am proud to be serving the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as the first Saudi CEO at Standard Chartered. The global and regional leadership team share my excitement in our official entrance into the Kingdom, representing the Bank’s newest frontier, and one we are confident will further reinforce our purpose to drive commerce and prosperity across the region. We see great opportunities in supporting the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 through our powerful global network. Having a strong functional presence in the Kingdom will allow us to connect clients internationally and provide access to business opportunities in Saudi Arabia and across the globe.’
Standard Chartered Bank played a pivot role in several prominent project financing transactions for the largest energy providers in Kingdom, including Aramco and ACWA Power, as well as having coordinated a number of capital raising operations across the Kingdom, such as being a Global Coordinator of the Saudi government’s $2.5 billion sukuk and $5 billion bond sale organised prior to the onset of the pandemic and recently the bank participated in a Joint Structurer and was one of the Bookrunner on Saudi Aramco’s landmark inaugural $6bn Sukuk, which was the largest ever US-dollar Corporate Sukuk in June 2021.
Standard Chartered has been operating in Saudi Arabia since 2010 through its capital markets operations licensed by Capital Market Authority (CMA) and it was granted a full banking license in 2019 by SAMA.