The National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), which celebrated 50 years of its existence last year, was established in 1952 as the first local and national bank and as the first Joint Stock Company in Kuwait and the Gulf area.
NBK is the largest financial institution in the state of Kuwait. It also enjoys the status of having the largest market share of banking services. NBK’s offices and subsidiaries are located in London, New York, Paris, Geneva, Bahrain, Lebanon, Vietnam and Thailand.
All NBK branches have online connections and offer various traditional banking services, such as current and saving accounts, fixed deposits and consumer lending. The bank has recently introduced new services for all the sectors, including investment accounts, personal loans and salary accounts.
NBK has been ranked among the largest 300 banks in the world and the seventh in the Arab world in terms of capital, which exceeds KD 380 million ($1.3 billion). In 1999, the bank generated a record profit of $306 million and a return of 24.5 per cent on the shareholders equity, with total assets equal to $12.4 billion.
This bank also has credit rating among banks in the Middle East by internationally known agencies, including Moody’s, Standard and Poor’s, Fitch IBCA and Capital Intelligence. To add an extra feather in the cap, NBK has been given the ‘Euromoney’ award of excellence as ‘The Best Local Bank in the Middle East’. It has also earned a nomination for being the ‘Best Bank in Kuwait’ in the last six years. In the past too, NBK has earned the reputation of being the ‘Best Small Bank in the World’, and the ‘Best Bank in the Middle East’.
NBK manages the investment of its retail and corporate customers through its subsidiaries, the National Bank of Kuwait (Suisse) and the NBK Investment Management Company (NBKIM) which is located in London and has a strategic alliance with the Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Investment Management Limited. A variety of investment funds, such as the ‘Watani Fund’, offer multiple choices of asset management services that are tailored to fit the needs of the prestigious NBK client list.