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Saudi's Riyad Bank picks Goldman to advise on talks with NCB: sources

Reuters  |  DUBAI 

By Hadeel Al Sayegh

DUBAI (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's has chosen to advise on its merger talks with National Commercial Bank, two sources familiar with the matter said.

NCB, the kingdom's biggest lender by assets, and said in December they had begun preliminary talks to potentially create a combination with $183 billion in assets. Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund, and the government are major shareholders in both banks.

did not immediately respond to a request for comment, while declined comment.

Goldman also advised Saudi British Bank, which in October signed a deal to merge with rival to create Saudi Arabia's third-biggest lender with a market capitalisation of about $17.2 billion.

NCB is also considering proposals after more than half a dozen banks including and pitched for an advisory role last week, sources familiar with the matter said. The banks were not immediately available for comment.

A wave of is sweeping in the Gulf region, as profit margins have been squeezed by lower government and consumer spending in the face of

Two of the biggest banks in the United Arab Emirates, where regulatory pressure is also mounting on smaller banks in particular, linked up to create in 2017.

(Additional reporting by and Saeed Azhar; Editing by Alexander Smith)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, January 14 2019. 17:24 IST