Bahrain’s Gulf Finance House to delist from London bourse

Bahrain’s Gulf Finance House has announced plans to delist its shares on the London Stock Exchange, which have barely traded over the past year.

The group has yet to make a decision on whether to also delist from the Kuwait Stock Exchange, where its shares are the highest traded by volume of any listed entity.

GFH, whose shares are also listed in Bahrain and Dubai, said last week that it was considering delisting in London and Kuwait.

“GFH would like to inform its shareholders and the markets, that it has decided to terminate its Global Depository Receipt [GDR] Programme, and has initiated the procedures to delist the GDR from the London Stock Exchange [LSE],” the company said on Sunday.

A Bahrain-based official with GFH, who did not wish to be named, said that the delisting process in London would likely be completed by the middle of May.

Although the statement said that the group’s listing in Kuwait would continue, the matter has yet to be conclusively decided, the Bahrain-based official said.

“There will be a separate review process for the Kuwait listing, so no decision has been made yet,” he said.

“The board will have to discuss this matter more fully before any final decision on the matter is taken.”

Just 48,445 GFH GDR shares have traded on the London Stock Exchange in the past year, 30,000 of those of those on Thursday.

“Given that there has been virtually no activity in the bank’s GDR on LSE, GFH’s board of directors has decided that terminating the programme is in the best interests of the bank,” the group said.

By contrast, GFH’s shares have been the highest traded stocks by volume on both the Dubai Financial Market and the Kuwait stock exchanges.

GFH’s shares are currently suspended across all four markets as the company carries out a share capital reduction plan, with trading due to resume on Tuesday.

The group’s Dubai shares last traded at 23.3 fils, down 22 per cent since the start of the year.

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John Everington

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