Meezan Bank and Eden Builders Sign Rs. 2 billion Islamic Project Finance

July 31st, 2008

The signing ceremony of Rs. 2 billion Islamic Project financing Sukuk issue of Eden Builders Limited was held at a local hotel in Karachi on Thursday. Irfan Siddiqui, President & CEO of Meezan Bank, Muhammad Arshad CEO of Eden Builders and other participating financial institutions inked the deal. The proceeds from the “A” rated privately placed Sukuk issue will be utilized by Eden Builders to finance its upcoming housing projects called “Eden Value Homes Extension” stretching over an area of 1,500 Kanals in Lahore.

Meezan Bank acted as the Lead Advisor & Arranger and Shariah Structuring Advisor of this innovative Islamic Project financing Sukuk transaction. Askari Bank Limited acted as Co-Arranger. Speaking on the occasion Irfan Siddiqui, President and CEO Meezan Bank said that this Islamic finance facility of Rs.2 billion is one of the largest Islamic mandates awarded in the real estate sector of Pakistan. He said that Meezan Bank is active in financing the real estate sector and this historic deal with Eden Builders reflects the Bank’s commitment to spread Islamic banking in this sector.

Mr. Irfan said that Meezan Bank is the leading Islamic Bank in Pakistan with the dominant market share of this sector.  The Bank has grown very aggressively over the last six years and has achieved a growth rate of around 60% per annum every year during this period.  He shared his vision to establish Islamic banking as the banking of first choice and said that this successful financing arrangement with Eden Builders is a sign of rising confidence in Islamic banking.

Speaking at the occasion, Mr. Muhammad Arshad CEO of Eden Builders said that the company has successfully launched two Mega Housing Projects in Lahore. Considering the phenomenal success of these projects Eden Builders has decided to launch the extension of Eden Value Homes (EVH) project. This project will consist of 3500 housing units of various sizes. He said the project cost would be Rs. 9 Billion.

Mr. Arshad added that Eden Builders will embark on more housing projects in Lahore and also expand its operations outside Lahore, namely Sialkot, Gujranwala, Multan and Islamabad very shortly. He stated that the outlook of doing housing business in Pakistan is very good as the demand for housing is strong. It is estimated that there is a shortfall of more than 300,000 housing units and it is accumulating on annual basis. Eden has established a reputation for providing affordable and high quality housing solutions to the community within one compound. Our core competency is high quality. Customer satisfaction is our priority always.

Eden Builders Limited is a Public Limited Company completely independent of its predecessor company Eden Developers (Pvt) Limited with an aim of specializing in the real estate sector with particular emphasis on undertaking mass scale affordable housing projects either independently or in Joint Ventures with leading local and foreign companies.

Eden Builders draws its strength from Eden Developers (Pvt.) Limited, a well known and trusted name in Pakistan’s real state sector, which has over the last 26 years, developed excellent expertise and infrastructure by delivering over 20 successful projects and over 3,500 town houses.

Meezan Bank, the first and largest Islamic Bank in Pakistan received Islamic commercial banking license by the State bank of Pakistan in 2002. In the past six years, Meezan Bank has grown from being a small niche player operating with only 6 branches at the end of 2002 to a Bank now with 114 online branches and sub branches all over Pakistan .

The Bank has a large product menu offering a complete range of Islamic banking products and services. All branches are ‘on-line’ and are supported by state of the art 24/7 Banking services to all its customers, which includes 100 ATM’s, Internet Banking and a Call Center that operates 24 hours a day seven days a week.  The Bank also offers a comprehensive Debit Card that is accepted at over 3,000 outlets across Pakistan.