Kuwait: The Gulf Investment Corporation announced today that its General Assembly reviewed and approved the audited financial statements for the year 2011. Net income for the year grew to US$ 182 million from US$ 151 million in 2010, representing a year-on-year increase of 20%.

The Chairman of the Board H.E. Dr. Zakaria Ahmed Hejres commended the solid performance saying: “GIC’s good performance in a challenging business environment is a reflection of its resilience and strength. I am pleased to note that the steady progress that GIC made in financial strength and risk profile, continues to be in tandem with its business expansion and revenue growth. The corporation continued to play a major role in the development of GCC-based projects via its principal investments as well as in the capital markets through its investment activities and product innovations. The Board will continue to contribute in its strategic role towards achieving GIC’s corporate goals under the full support of our shareholders.”

Earnings from GIC core businesses contributed to the growth in net operating revenues, which reached US$ 292 million, an increase of 31% compared to the preceding year. As at 31st December 2011, total shareholders’ equity reached US$ 2,405 million, representing a year-on-year value addition of US$ 273 million. This increase, which includes both realized and unrealized gains, reflects an economic return of 12.8% on the previous year’s equity.

GIC’s total balance sheet, as at 31st December 2011, reached US$ 5,881 million. With a leverage of just under 2.4 times, the balance sheet structure remains healthy and resilient. The high capital levels, conservative leverage and good asset quality are reflected in robust capital adequacy ratios. Tier 1 capital ratio, as per Basel II guidelines, stood at 30.6% as of the 2011 year end. At that year, GIC had ample liquidity, with cash and equivalents of US$ 596 million, on top of other liquid assets of nearly US$ 3,000 million

Commenting on the Corporation’s notable performance, Mr Hisham A. Al Razzuqi, Chief Executive Officer, stated that “2011 has been another good year for GIC. The consistent year on year enhancement of all key financial performance indicators is especially gratifying. The growth in profitability was achieved alongside improvements in capital strength, liquidity and liability structure, leverage levels and risk profile. This multi-dimensional strength resulted in positive rating actions from international rating agencies, including Moody’s, Fitch and Rating Agency Malaysia. The strong foundation we have built, combined with the goodwill we have established, will enable us expand our business and regional franchise. We will continue, as a team, to strive towards achieving our corporate goals of contributing to the development of private enterprise in the region and creating value for our shareholders.”

Established in 1983, GIC is a regional financial institution owned entirely and equally by the six GCC states of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. GIC provides a comprehensive set of financial services that support the development of the private enterprise and foster economic growth in the Gulf region. GIC has emerged as a regional leader in its chosen fields, and has successfully promoted and developed projects in the GCC across a range of sectors, including financial services, petrochemical, metal, power, utilities, and communications.