BIMB on track to complete listing status transfer to Bank Islam by August

The group is currently awaiting the relevant approvals from various regulators including BNM, SC and Bursa Malaysia

By NUR HANANI AZMAN / Pic By MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

BIMB Holdings Bhd’s restructuring exercise, which includes the transfer of its listing status to Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd, is on the right track and set to be concluded by August 2020 — one month earlier than expected.

Bank Islam CEO Mohd Muazzam Mohamed said the group is currently awaiting the relevant approvals from various regulators including Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) and Bursa Malaysia Bhd.

“So, we are going through that process. It’s on the right track. We don’t foresee any issue at this point in time,” he told The Malaysian Reserve (TMR) on the sidelines of Bank Islam’s debit card launch in Putrajaya yesterday.

In a bourse filing on December 2019, BIMB said Bank Islam — the group’s fully-held subsidiary — will take over BIMB’s listing status via a share swap arrangement.

The group will also place out portions of new BIMB shares to raise up to RM800 million, to fully settle its outstanding sukuk held by BIMB’s majority shareholder, Lembaga Tabung Haji (TH).

According to the exchange filing, the proposed restructuring initiative is forecast to be completed in the third quarter of this year.

Bank Islam will be the fourth Malaysian bank since 2016 to assume the listing status of its parent, following in the footsteps of peers such as Alliance Bank Malaysia Bhd, Affin Bank Bhd and RHB Bank Bhd.

The bank yesterday launched the Bank Islam Visa TH debit card-i in collaboration with its strategic partners, TH and Visa.

Based on current market potential, the bank aims to achieve 100,000 cardholders of the TH debit card-i within a year.

The group introduced its Visa debit card-i to the market in 2011. As of January 2020, the lender issued more than three million debit cards.

The TH debit card-i, which provides a range of payment and cash access worldwide, also facilitates financial transactions for pilgrims while in Saudi Arabia.

Cardholders will also benefit from cash withdrawal fee waiver in Saudi Arabia during haj season, special fares on Kuala Lumpur International Airport Express services and special discounts at the Movenpick Hotel and Convention Centre for superior room accommodation, dining and other amenities.

“With this card, cardholders will have the opportunity to make payment transactions for purchases at over 60 million merchant locations and cash access at over 2.5 million self-service terminals system worldwide, including in Saudi Arabia,” Mohd Muazzam said.

The card is also the bank’s first biodegradable card, made from environmentally friendly materials, while still maintaining its quality and durability, he added.

The banking group also announced a temporary moratorium of up to six months for monthly instalment financing payments for individuals or businesses affected by the novel coronavirus.

Meanwhile, TH group MD and CEO Datuk Nik Mohd Hasyudeen Yusoff said the pilgrim fund expects to announce its 2019 dividend this month.

Citing economists, TMR reported last month that TH’s 2019 return would likely be double that of the 1.25% announced for 2018, given that the fund’s asset surplus stood at RM2.3 billion last year versus RM1 billion as at end-2018.

In December last year, Nik Mohd Hasyudeen was reported as saying that the dividend for 2019 should be higher than that of 2018, as TH’s performance had been positive.