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Gatehouse Bank and Threadneedle Investments to explore strategic investment opportunities

At a media briefing held today in Kuwait City, Gatehouse Bank plc (“Gatehouse”) and Threadneedle Investments (“Threadneedle”) hosted members of the GCC media. During the briefing, they outlined their plans to explore the development of a range of diverse investment products aimed at the growing market segment of Islamic investors. The briefing comes shortly after the announcement of Threadneedle’s acquisition of an equity stake in Gatehouse, bringing together a global asset management powerhouse and one of the most well-established originators of high quality Shariah-compliant structured investments. In early March 2015, Threadneedle, a leading international asset manager based in London with assets under management of $148.2 billion, completed the acquisition of a 2% strategic equity stake in Gatehouse. Doing so, Threadneedle joined a roster of GCC based financial institutions as a significant investor in Gatehouse, the London-based and regulated investment bank. Gatehouse has built a widely regarded reputation for the origination of high quality Shariah-compliant investments in real estate and other asset classes. An important part of Threadneedle’s investment in Gatehouse is the desire of both parties to work together, sharing their respective global fund structuring knowledge and Shariah-compliant origination track record. They intend to use this combination to explore the considerable opportunities for a range of high quality Shariah-compliant institutional and retail investment products. “Over the past eight years, Gatehouse has gained recognition globally as one of the foremost originators and structurers of diversified Shariah-compliant investments” said Fahed Boodai, Chairman of Gatehouse. “So we are pleased at having established this relationship with Threadneedle, widely respected as a leading international asset manager in multiple asset classes. The skills and experience of our two organisations are very complementary and given the outlook for high quality, well-managed and properly structured Shariah-compliant investment products, we see considerable benefit in a partnership that we hope will last many years.” This partnership recognises the growing potential for investment products targeting the Shariah-compliant financial sector. “The market aimed at the institutional and high net worth segments within Shariah-compliant finance has been growing steadily for two decades. Gatehouse has been a major participant in bringing new and diversified investment opportunities to investors, particularly those based in the GCC region and Malaysia” said Henry Thompson, Chief Executive Officer of Gatehouse. “This market remains very buoyant, and is being joined by increasing demand from a broader base of investors. We believe that with Threadneedle’s global investment knowledge, track record and distribution strength, we can explore with them a range of Shariah-compliant structured products which will appeal strongly within the traditionally strong Islamic markets where Gatehouse has excellent, entrenched relationships”. Ted Truscott, Chairman of Threadneedle said "In the four years to 2014, Shariah-compliant funds under management grew at more than 17 per cent annually and the outlook remains strong. We think there is an exciting opportunity to develop a broader range of Shariah-compliant investment products encompassing equities, real estate and sukuk to meet the needs of the expanding investor base. Gatehouse's combination of Shariah-compliant investment expertise, and the breadth of its relationships across the GCC region and Southeast Asia makes them a very good fit for Threadneedle’s track record in fund management. We are excited about the opportunities for working with Gatehouse to develop our ideas for this growing market."

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