World’s Best Islamic Financial Institutions: Global Winners

Best Sukuk Bank HSBC
Best Islamic Retail Bank Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank

Best Islamic Investment Bank


Best Takaful (Insurance) Provider

Etiqa Takaful Berhad
Best Asset Management Company CIMB Principal Islamic Asset Management
Best Shariah-Compliant Index Provider Dow Jones Islamic Market Indexes
Best Islamic Project Finance Provider Samba
Best Islamic Commodities Provider

International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation

Best Islamic Real Estate Finance Provider Qatar Islamic Bank
Best Islamic Fund Manager QInvest
Best Up-and-Comer Boubyan Bank



In the first nine months of 2012, HSBC topped underwriter league tables for Islamic bonds (sukuk) with a market share of 27.1%, according to Bloomberg. HSBC also topped underwriter league tables for international sukuk, GCC Islamic bonds and domestic Islamic bonds for the same period. HSBC acted as joint lead manager and bookrunner for Axiata’s Rmb1 billion ($160 million) sukuk. The underlying asset was airtime vouchers.

Mohammed Dawood, director, global capital financing, HSBC Amanah


Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank

ADIB boasts the third-largest retail network in the UAE, with 75 retail branches and 550 ATMs. It recently introduced an Islamic telecom reward payment card in conjunction with telecoms provider Etisalat, which enables customers to earn free talk time when they spend money. It also launched a Ghina savings account, which offers cash prize draws to customers and is designed to encourage a savings culture within the UAE.

H.E. Jawaan Awaidha Suhail Al Khaili, chairman



Samba was involved in a number of landmark deals—including our deal of the year, the $650 million Jebel Ali Free Zone sukuk, where it was joint lead arranger and bookrunner, and its co-managerial role in Qatar’s $4 billion dual-tranche sukuk, which, at the time it was issued, was the largest dollar-denominated sukuk. Its deal pipeline in 2012, which included a range of financing facilities, demonstrates its versatility.

Eisa Al-Eisa, chairman, Samba Financial


Etiqa Takaful Berhad

Saudi Arabia may be the largest market for takaful, but the Saudi cooperative model is not viewed as pure takaful, and Malaysian takaful operators tend to enjoy higher profitability than their Saudi counterparts. The wide range of products offered by Etiqa Takaful, which is part of the successful Maybank Group, encompassing general takaful, family takaful, motor takaful and personal and corporate, is a key differentiator. Etiqa’s previous chief executive officer, Hans De Cuyper, was quoted in the Malaysian press as saying that Etiqa had the widest business lines, product range and distribution footprint in Islamic financing. It is looking to grow regionally in bancassurance and takaful.

Ahmad Rizlan Azman, CEO


CIMB-Principal Islamic Asset Management

A partnership between Malaysia’s CIMB Group and Principal Global Investors, CIMB-Principal Islamic Asset Management was among the first asset managers in Malaysia to be shariah-compliant. It has $1.5 billion in assets under management and is an innovator in the Islamic funds space, having launched UCITS-compliant (the EU’s Undertakings for Collective Investment in Transferable Securities directive) funds in different parts of the world, including Europe, Asia and the Middle East. It was the first Malaysian fund promoter to launch an Irish UCITS fund range.

Datuk Noripah Kamso, CEO


Dow Jones Islamic Market Indexes

Few index providers can say that they have thousands of indexes that have passed screening for shariah compliance. That perhaps explains why Dow Jones’s are the most widely used Islamic indexes globally. The screening methodology it uses to compile the indexes is based on feedback from an independent shariah supervisory board.

Michael Petronella, president, Dow Jones Indexes



Saudi-based Samba was mandated lead arranger, documentation and coordinating bank for a large-scale 5 billion ($1.3 billion) Saudi riyal senior Islamic project debt facility for the integrated Jubail Acrylates Complex. The complex pertains to three different petrochemical projects in Jubail Saudi Arabia, involving Saudi Acrylic Monomer, Saudi Acrylic Acid and Saudi Acrylic Polymers. Separate project finance facilities were coordinated by Samba for all three companies. Samba anticipates that the inclusion of Islamic tranches in an increasing number of multisourced project finance deals in the GCC will continue, given sponsors and government demand for shariah-compliant solutions and the desire to promote Islamic finance.

Eisa Al-Eisa, chairman


International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation

The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation is part of the Islamic Development Bank group and is considered to be a leader in shariah-compliant trade finance. In recent months it has used that expertise to provide much-needed food and commodities financing to countries impacted by the Arab Spring uprisings. In April the ITFC signed a framework agreement with the Tunisian government to help finance the import of commodities such as wheat and petrol. Late last year it supported Egypt’s food and energy sectors with $1 billion in financing.

Dr Waleed Al-Wohaib, CEO


Qatar Islamic Bank

Qatar Islamic Bank’s wholesale banking division provides real estate and contract financing to individuals and companies and for both residential and commercial buildings. It also has a 49% stake in Aqar, a real-estate investment and development company involved in the construction of the 6 billion Qatari riyal ($1.6 billion) Doha Festival City, alongside QIB, which is also an investor in the project.

Bassel Gamal, CEO



Earlier this year, QInvest, which is 49.6% owned by QIB, launched what is believed to be the first open-architecture managed-account platform, uniting Islamic fund management capabilities from some of the best managers in the world with investors seeking shariah-compliant investment vehicles. Funds already on the platform, which is called QMAP, include QInvest Eagle Fund, QInvest Edgewood Fund and QInvest GAM Fund. QInvest CEO Tamim Hamad Al-Kuwari believes QMAP is a pioneering concept. The first funds are said to be off to a strong start and are already among the best within their peer groups.

Tamim Hamad Al-Kuwari, CEO


Boubyan Bank

The Kuwait-based bank, majority owned by National Bank of Kuwait since 2009, has existed since 2004. However, in recent years it has undergone a major transformation in the wake of the global financial crisis, with a new executive management team increasing the bank’s capital by 50%. As part of its five-year strategy (2010–2014), Boubyan returned to profitability in 2012. The past 12 months saw significant growth in operating profit, financing and operating income on the back of enhanced retail and corporate products.

Adel Abdul-Wahab Al-Majed, chairman and managing director

alt World’s Best Islamic Financial Institutions 2013: