First National Bank Annual Report, The bank was incorporated by a wealthy Lebanese family on October 30, 1991, as a Société Anonyme Libanaise, a joint stock company, under the name “Bank of Commerce SAL”. During the first three years, the bank conducted limited activities, until a group headed by Mr. Mohammad Jassem Al Sager and comprised of Kuwaiti, Saudi and Emirati businessmen, as well as industrial and financial investors, and Lebanese professionals, acquired 100% of the bank’s share capital. As a result of this change in ownership, the bank started new and diversified banking activities in January 1996.
In 2000, Lebanon Invest SAL acquired 62% of the bank’s shares on behalf of a group of investors. Mr. Rami El Nimer subsequently served as Chairman of the bank’s Board of Directors until December 2002, when he was appointed General Manager of the bank. During the second half of 2002, the bank acquired the total outstanding share capital of Société Bancaire du Liban (SBL). The merger was completed on December 31, 2002 and contributed assets totaling LBP 119,974 million (USD 79.6 million), representing over 40% of the bank’s overall asset growth.
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