Dubai: Burgan Bank, Kuwait’s third-largest lender by assets, reported a 31 per cent rise in fourth-quarter net profit on Sunday.

A unit of Kuwait Projects Co (KIPCO), Burgan made a net profit of 17.1 million dinars ($56.88 million, Dh56,766) in the three months to December 31, up from 13.1 million dinars in the prior-year period, it said in a bourse statement.

An analyst at HSBC forecast the Kuwaiti lender would make a quarterly net profit of 18 million dinars.

Burgan announced on December 30 it was selling a controlling stake in Jordan Kuwait Bank to another subsidiary of parent firm KIPCO, in a transaction it later disclosed was worth 191.1 million dinars.

The impact of the sale was due to be included in its fourth-quarter numbers.

Burgan’s 2015 annual profit was 76.1 million dinars, up from 61.8 million dinars in the previous year.

The lender has proposed paying a 2015 dividend of 0.018 dinars per share. This compares with a 0.015 dinars cash dividend and a 5 per cent stock dividend for 2014.

The lender in January said it was in the final stages of selecting banks to arrange a 100 million dinar bond issue. The statement came two days after sources told Reuters that it had picked NBK Capital and KIPCO Asset Management to manage the bond sale.