BLOM promised to “ensure employment continuity” for HSBC’s current employees. (The Daily Star/Mahmoud Kheir)
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BLOM, the second leading Lebanese bank, took the first step Wednesday in acquiring highly coveted HSBC operations in Lebanon. In a brief statement, BLOM announced it has signed an agreement to acquire the assets and liabilities of HSBC Bank Middle East Limited. The bank did not disclose any details about the price it will pay for the acquisition of HSBC's retail business in Lebanon.Bankers say that although HSBC in Lebanon is rather small compared to other leading banks in the country, it nevertheless has an important customer base and very qualified staff.Sources stressed that the other reason for the exit of foreign-owned banks is due to the fierce competition from leading Lebanese banks that control over 80 percent of market share.
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