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Access Bank to Acquire Kenya’s Sidian Bank for N15bn

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By Joseph Amah, Abuja

Access Bank Plc has disclosed that it has entered into an agreement to acquire the entire 83.4 percent equity stake held by Centum Investment Plc, a Kenyan-based investment company, in Sidian Bank Ltd, for the sum of about N15 billion ($37 million).


The financial institution announced the acquisition in a statement on Wednesday.

Access Bank said the purchase consideration includes the price to “book multiple of 1.
1x” based on the audited March 31, 2022 shareholders’ equity of Sidian.
“Sidian will be merged with Access Bank’s subsidiary in Kenya, Access Bank Kenya, to create a stronger banking institution better positioned to serve the Kenyan market,” the statement reads.

Commenting on the transaction, Herbert Wigwe, the group chief executive, Access Corporation said:  “This growth transaction being implemented in Kenya represents the relentless focus and execution of our strategic objectives within our banking subsidiary even as we grow the other businesses within Access Corporation’s core segments.”
“The acquisition of Sidian is a significant step-up in scale and potential for Access Bank in Kenya which represents the largest market and trade corridor in East Africa.
“The significant increase in scale and customer base presents us with enormous opportunities to support growth in the various ecosystems we are building in our trade and payment business. The economies of scale that derive therefrom will continue to drive and enhance contributions to all stakeholders.”
On his part, Roosevelt Ogbonna, chief executive officer, Access Bank, said the transaction builds on their earlier acquisition of the former Transnational Bank Plc (now Access Bank Kenya) “and underscores our resolve to strengthen our presence in Kenya, a key African market that fits into our strategic focus for geographic earnings growth and diversification.” 
Ogbonna said the acquisition and intended subsequent merger would create a strong and competitive balance sheet for Access Bank in Kenya.
He added that the acquisition also positioned the bank to be well-placed to promote regional trade finance and other cross-border banking services in the East African Community (EAC) and broader Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) region.
The bank said the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals in Kenya and Nigeria.
The recent buy is the bank’s sixth acquisition in five years.
In 2018, the lender acquired Diamond Bank through a merger and acquisition deal, completed in 2019.
In the fourth quarter of the same year, it acquired Transnational Bank (Kenya) Plc.
In August 2020, the bank also announced the acquisition of Cavmont Bank Limited through a merger deal and finalised the process in January 2021.
It also acquired Grobank in South Africa.
Other banks it acquired include Marina International Bank Limited, Nigeria, Capital Bank International Plc, Nigeria, and African Banking Corporation in Mozambique.

Business News

Afreximbank Closes $282 million India-focused Club Deal

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By Tony Obiechina, Abuja 

The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced the successful completion of a first-of-its-kind India-focussed club deal for US$282.00 million.

Initiated for the exclusive participation of Indian lenders, and arranged by Bank of Africa UK PLC, the primary syndicated club deal saw participation from Indian lenders through their overseas branches and subsidiaries in the Dubai International Financial Centre in the United Arab Emirates, Singapore and Mauritius.

The facility, which was backed by six participating banks and financial institutions, including five that joined as first-time lenders to Afreximbank, helping the Bank achieve its objective of diversifying its funding sources, carries a three-year tenor.

At a commemorative event held in Dubai, U.A.E., to mark the conclusion of the deal, Haytham ElMaayergi, Executive Vice President at Afreximbank, said that the conclusion of the initiative represented a major milestone for the Bank as it sought to fulfil the key objectives of its funding programme.

Highlighting the importance of investing in, and for, Africa, Mr. ElMaayergi said: “this facility will help Afreximbank to continue to play a major role in the development of intra-African trade and trade between Africa and the rest of the world, particularly with India. 

It is a testament to the rapid growth in Africa’s economic relationship with India and is evidence of Afreximbank’s growing ability to harness resources into Africa and to fund trade finance related investments that would have a positive impact on trade between Africa and India.”

Chandi Mwenebungu, Director and Group Treasurer of Afreximbank, reviewing the Bank’s vision for Africa, said that its funding objectives included achieving the diversification of its liability book by geography, investor type and tenor.

Also addressing guests at the event were Said Adren, CEO of Bank of Africa UK PLC, who thanked the lenders for their participation, and Zineb Tamtaoui, General Manager of Bank of Africa, Dubai Branch, who expressed appreciation for the opportunity to put together “a landmark deal that would be a stepping stone to many India-focused club deals going forward.”

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Business News

Geregu Power Earns N50.4bn From Electricity Sales, Capacity Charges 

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By Tony Obiechina, Abuja 

Geregu Power Plc has generated N50.4bn on electricity sales and capacity charges to Nigerians in the first quarter of 2024.

The power company which is the first listed power company of the Nigerian Exchange Ltd disclosed the performance in its Q1, 2024 financial statement.

The company grew its Q1 revenue by 225 per cent from N14.

2bn in 2023 to N50.
4bn in 2023.

A breakdown reveals that Geregu Power sold energy worth N31bn and received N19bn as revenue from capacity charge.

Recall that the power company posted an annual revenue of N82.9bn in the full year of 2023 but it has covered half of the amount in Q1.

The revenue was above the company’s forecast for Q1 2024 when it projected its revenue to rise to N31.24bn.

Geregu Power recorded a profit before tax of N21.9bn up from the N5.3bn recorded in Q1 of last year, reflecting 307.8 per cent growth.

During the period underreview, the company saw its profit after tax rose by 307.3 per cent to N14.46bn from N3.54bn recorded in Q1 of last year. In the full year 2023, the company made N16.1bn net profit.

The net profit was above the company projection of N5.5bn. 

Geregu Power took an income tax charge of N7.43bn, up from the N1.8bn in Q1 2023. The tax charges were higher than the N2.7bn projected for Q1 2024.

The company also spent N21.5bn on the cost of sales involving gas supply and transportation, up from the N6.6bn spent on gas supply and transportation in Q1 2023.

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Economy

Afreximbank, Govt. of Bahamas Sign Host Country Agreement

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African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) and the Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas on Thursday signed the Afreximbank Annual Meetings (AAM) Host Country Agreement.

The signing ceremony was held during a media briefing on Thursday in the Bahamas.

NAN reports that the 31st AAM2024 will be hosted in Nassau, Bahamas, from June 12 to 15, 2024 with the theme “Owning Our Destiny: Economic Prosperity on the Platform of Global Africa.

Philip Davis, Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, in his remarks, said the signing ceremony was an important boost for the Bahamas and Africa and the Caribbean (AfriCarabian) visions.

“It is with immense pride that we officially sign the agreement for the Bahamas to host the AAM in June.

“Our ancestral history is marked by strength in the face of adversity, duty and creativity amid scarcity and the pursuit of self-determination.

“Our dreams, hopes and aspirations are encapsulated in this moment as we look forward to a future where Africa and the Caribbean stand shoulder to shoulder not just in solidarity but for economic collaboration for mutual prosperity.”

Davis said the AAM2024 meeting in the Bahamas was a symbol of what Africa and the Caribbean could accomplish through duty and collaboration.

“ In today’s world amid economic and environmental challenges, instead of building more walls, we choose to build bridges of trade, innovation, financial integration and most importantly bridges connecting our people and culture.

He said the Bahama’s commitment to the mission was underscored by the preparations underway to ensure the AGM stood as a forum for dialogue and impact deliberations and collaborations.

“ We are setting the stage for discussions to aid us in navigating the challenges of our times which include inclusivity, and the digital transformation of our economy.

“For the bank and our partners, we extend our deepest gratitude for entrusting us with the honour of hosting this significant event.

“Together we are celebrating the spirit of partnership, economic union of dreams, dreams of our ancestors and dreams of future generations that we pledge to realise through unity, collaboration and mutual respect.”

Davis said that in November 2022 The Bahamas and  other Caribbean countries signed an agreement with AFreximbank to forge a future for the advancement of the African and Caribbean people and their economies.

The prime minister said Afreximbank’s commitment to expanding operations in the Caribbean was seen in its establishment of the Caribbean Africa Bank, adding that it was an example of potential for development in the region.

“ As we come for the meetings, it will be remembered for the decisions made and agreements signed but also more significantly as Africa and the Caribbean came together for a better future,” he said.

Prof. Benedict Oramah, President and Chairman Board of Directors, Afreximbank, said the signing of the agreement would solidify the partnership between Afreximbank and the Caribbean.

Oramah said the partnership would form a platform for global Africa to take its destiny into its hands.

He said he was grateful to the prime minister, the government and the people of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas for the honour of agreeing to host the AAM2024.

“ By holding the 31st AAM, we collectively make a strong commitment to elevating the collaboration between the Afreximbank, the Commonwealth of the Bahamas and the entire Caribbean region to a higher pedestal.

“It bears testament to the depth of your government’s appreciation of the importance of our unique partnership in catalysing shared growth and prosperity for all of Africa and the Caribbean.

“It affirms commitment to ensure inclusiveness and bring the bank’s services to the doorsteps of the people.

“Bringing the meeting to the Caribbean also offers us the opportunity to celebrate the progress we have made so far between Africa and the Caribbean.”

Oramah said the bank was working with the government of the Bahamas to develop an Afro-Caribbeann marketplace in the Bahamas.

He said, when completed, it would be a permanent marketplace that would house manufacturing warehouses, and be a distribution and logistic hub for various tradable merchandise that Africa and the Caribbean would produce.

“It will finally establish the Bahamas as a gateway into the Caribbean and we hope the government will work with us diligently to bring this project to completion.”

Oramah said no fewer than 4,000 participants were expected at the AAM2024 adding that the opening ceremony would be held on June 13, which would be attended by Heads of State and Heads of governments.

He said others in attendance at the meetings would be African/Caribbean leaders and senior government officials, African and non-African policymakers, corporate leaders, bankers, academics and other thought leaders.

Oramah said there would be keynote presentations by policymakers and economists and a dedicated session to showcase trade and investment opportunities in the Caribbean and the Bahamas as well as sessions on youths, innovations and the creatives.

He said the 3rd Annual AfriCaribbean Trade and Investment Forum (ACTIF2024) will be incorporated into the AAM2024. (NAN)

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