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Arqaam Capital, the specialist emerging markets investment bank, gained a seat on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) as the JSE's first new member in three years. Arqaam has chosen South Africa as the base for its African investment and advisory business. The South African business will drive their expansion into African markets with an initial focus on Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria.

Arqaam will offer local and international clients South African equity products backed by in-depth research reports of businesses across multiple markets. The bank's local offer will expand into derivatives and bonds.

The banking licence issued by the JSE is the first to be issued in three years and shows the JSE's recognition for the need for a bank such as Arqaam in the South African market. Nicky Newton-King, CEO of the JSE said, "We are excited to welcome Arqaam Capital as the newest equity member of the exchange. Not only is Arqaam Capital well respected for its proven track record of success in emerging markets across North Africa and the Middle East, it is also the first brokerage to join the JSE from the Gulf region. We see their membership as another step in strengthening the JSE's relationships with financial market players in other emerging markets".

Arqaam CEO, Riad Meliti said, "We are delighted to have joined the JSE and to enter the South African market. Our plan is to replicate the emerging markets model that has seen such success in our Dubai office. By drawing on South Africa's world-class skills and investment infrastructure, Arqaam will expand to include multiple business practices and become a hub from which we can participate in the African Growth story.

"To our over 700 institutional investors, Arqaam South Africa offers exposure to African stocks, on-the ground intelligence and further deal-making capacity. By introducing African market opportunities to these clients, Arqaam will attract new investment into continental markets. To South African investors we offer exposure to frontier, emerging and MENA markets backed by multi-territory comparative research. This is a compelling offer and one of the reasons Arqaam is gaining, on average, 40 new institutional clients per quarter - many of whom are demanding access to fast growing African markets."