GFH Financial Group has picked a 50.4% majority stake in Bahraini investment bank Global Banking Corporation (GB Corp).

GFH became the majority stakeholder after taking an additional 21.8% holding in GB Corp.

The development comes after Bahrain’s central bank gave the go-ahead to purchase a stake of up to 60%.

GFH CEO Hisham Alrayes said: “We’re pleased to announce this important acquisition that will complement some of our associated investments and increase the size of our assets under management. The acquisition will also give us access to key portfolios and contribute to GFH’s profitability during the year.”

Established in 2007, GB Corp offers Shari’a compliant investment banking services covering asset/wealth management, private equity, real estate investments, corporate finance advisory, structured finance as well as investment placement.

The business, founded in 2007, serves HNWIs and institutional and government clients.

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It had around $500m in AUM at the end of December 2019.

Last November, the firm secured Bahrain central bank’s nod to convert its licence to a Category 1 Investment Business Firm in order to optimise its business model.

Meanwhile, GFH focuses on asset management, wealth management, commercial banking as well as real estate development.

It has a presence in the GCC region, North Africa and India.

The firm is listed in Bahrain Bourse, Kuwait Stock Exchange along with Dubai Financial Market.