Kingdom Holding Company (KHC) owned by Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal has agreed to acquire 16.2% stake in Banque Saudi Fransi for SAR 29.5 per share, nearly $1.5 billion (SAR 5.8 billion).

The deal signed on September 12, 2017 makes KHC the largest shareholder in the French bank.

Listed on the Saudi stock exchange, Tadawul, KHC agreed to acquire the 16.2% stake from Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank, the corporate and investment banking arm of Crédit Agricole S.A., which was the largest shareholder in the bank with 31.11% stake before signing of the deal.

“This transaction is the culmination of management efforts over the past three years to increase KHC’s recurring cash flow and profitability. Banque Saudi Fransi’s solid financial performance will have a positive impact on KHC’s financial results upon closing of the transaction”, said Mohamed Fahmy, KHC Chief Financial Officer.

Commenting on the deal, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, Chairman of KHC said: “Our investment in Banque Saudi Fransi demonstrates our core belief in the outlook for the Saudi economy underpinned by Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Plan”.

After required regulatory approvals the deal is expected to close in the second half of 2017.

In August, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal invested $800 million into the expansion of the Four Seasons resort in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, boosting the country’s tourism industry.