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UK Islamic bank: Soccer boosting Gulf property investments

Andrew Ball, the CEO of the Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME), spoke to Al-Monitor about how soccer is fueling a rise in Gulf investment in northern England.
The Ritz hotel is pictured in central London on May 18, 2020.

Gulf investment in northern England real estate is rising, and Middle Eastern ownership of British soccer clubs is helping to drive it, according to Andrew Ball, chief executive officer of the Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME).  

The London-headquartered BLME is one of the largest Islamic banks based in Europe, and the lender focuses on savings, wealth management and real estate investments. Around half of the bank's £750 million ($894 million) real estate portfolio in the UK is within Greater London, with the remainder outside.

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