Two senior bankers leaving UAE lender NBAD

April 29, 2014 - 2:14:47 pm

ABU DHABI: Two senior bankers at National Bank of Abu Dhabi are leaving the lender to pursue other opportunities, three sources said on Tuesday, at a time of changing strategy at the largest bank by assets in the United Arab Emirates.

NBAD, 70 percent owned by the Abu Dhabi government, has been realigning its business under new chief executive Alex Thursby, who took charge last summer.

It is aiming to shift its earnings more towards fee-based income, such as for advising clients on debt issues and mergers and acquisitions, from gaining its cash primarily from lending-related activity.

Sources told Reuters that Michael Aissaoui, executive director, corporate finance advisory, and Nicholas Gilani, head of merchant banking for the Middle East and North Africa, had resigned. 

They spoke on condition of anonymity as the information isn't public.

Aissaoui joined the bank in 2012, while Gilani has been with NBAD since 2009.

"Both have resigned to explore opportunities elsewhere," one of the sources said.

A spokesman of NBAD declined to comment.

As well as a new chief executive, NBAD hired James Burdett as its chief financial officer in January. 

There have also been a number of changes below the executive level since Thursby's arrival.  

The bank reported on Monday a net profit of 1.41 billion dirhams or $383.9 million for the first quarter. 

Unchanged from the same period last year but well above the 1.2 billion dirhams average forecast of analysts polled by Reuters.  (Reuters)