Banking & Finance articles

The long journey of a large retailer

The long journey of a large retailer

Local markets have proven remarkably resilient when it comes to resisting the dominance of large retailers that offer fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) in hypermarkets and supermarkets—those behemoths of daily shopping that you enter with an empty shopping cart the size of a compact car and leave with said cart overflowing. One operator of mega-sized retail

A long time since the boom

Going into 2017, real estate stakeholders were riding a wave of optimism spurred by the end of a nearly three-year presidential vacuum and the formation of a unity government. After several years of market stagnation, developers willed themselves to believe that consumer confidence would be restored and residency uptake would finally resume. Buyers were also

Banking & finance

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Corporate governance

Corporate governance in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) has been insufficient and is preventing corporations from fulfilling their economic potential. Corporate governance is crucial when companies seek to attract new shareholders and optimally mobilize sources of capital, but publicly traded companies in the region are not only lagging behind developed economies in terms

From foggy to cloudy

Ethereal. Ephemeral. Elusive. ETP, perhaps. Questing for upcoming banking-sector development opportunities in 2018 brings a whole palette of e-words to mind, including the “e” in ETP (electronic trading platform), but not the favorite e-word of marketers and their PR minions: exciting.  It seems that development opportunities in the banking sector are increasingly scarce, partly, of

Five cheers for stability

A good starting point for reviewing the Lebanese banking sector at the end of 2017 to study a document that was published early in the year and is referred to in financial High Valyrian as a FSAP. For common folks, this stands for Financial Sector Assessment Program. A FSAP is undertaken by the institutions missing

A good time to borrow

Home loans account for more than a quarter of local banks’ private sector lending. This is in large part thanks to subsidized loans from Banque du Liban (BDL), Lebanon’s central bank,  and loans from the Public Corporation for Housing (PCH), which are offered through local banks to lower-middle and low-income home buyers. A surge in

Visions of community

E   You say that the ABC Mall in Verdun is seeking to be a community mall, starting with the priority hiring of local staff who can walk to work. You are well aware of the challenges that exist in the neighborhood relating to traffic congestion and parking. What is your recipe for organizing parking

Visions of community

It’s hurray time for Lebanon’s consumer society. Shopaholics, retail marketers, mall strategists and their assorted public relations minions are gearing up for the launch of the third ABC Mall in Lebanon. The new retail temple is slated to open its doors this summer in Beirut’s Verdun quarter. It will accommodate over 200 stores, including its

Makram Azar

E   Where do you think the next economic bubble is? It’s the broadly defined technology sector, in which you need to differentiate how you approach and analyze each one of these ventures because some of them will be very successful – as the 90s showed us with Amazon, Google, Apple, etc. – yet, many of

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