Doha Bank Plans to Sell Dollar, Riyal Bonds by Year-End, Seetharaman Says

Doha Bank QSC, Qatar’s third-biggest bank by revenue, aims to sell bonds by the end of this year in both dollars and the local riyal currency, the lender’s chief executive officer said.

The bond offering “will definitely happen, as I see it,” Raghavan Seetharaman said in an interview in the Qatari capital Doha today. “I expressed my intention to” sell the bonds in dollars and riyals to the central bank, which must approve the transaction, he said.

Qatar, the world’s biggest exporter of liquefied natural gas, is trying to develop a domestic debt market. The government sold 12 billion riyals ($3.3 billion) of bonds and Islamic debt this year. The Qatar Exchange, the country’s equity market, may start bond trading before September, the exchange’s Chief Executive Officer Andre Went said in February.

“The domestic market is there now,” Seetharaman said. He said last month the bank sought to raise as much as $1 billion in the fourth quarter by selling bonds. The money is likely to be raised for five years and is meant to “fix the maturity mismatch” on the bank’s balance sheet, he said.

Doha Bank posted a less-than-expected drop in second- quarter profit after the country’s sovereign wealth fund declined to take dividends. Net income fell 5.4 percent to 299.7 million riyals ($82.4 million) from the year-earlier period. That compares with the mean estimate of 235.7 million riyals by three analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Doha Bank shares rose 1.1 percent to close at 44.4 riyals today.

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Tuttle in Doha at rtuttle@bloomberg.net

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