By Our Reporter
Nigeria’s top tier bank and largest retail bank, Access Bank Plc, has secured the initial approval from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to restructure its operating structure from a commercial banking group to a financial services holding company (holdco).
Access Bank also announced definitive agreements to bolster its market position in Mozambique and another deal to enter the South African market. This followed recent transaction with Cavmont Bank in Zambia and further embedded the bank’s presence in the SADC region, one of Africa’s most important trading blocs.
In a regulatory filing at the stock market, Access Bank stated that it has received CBN’s Approval-in-Principle to restructure to a holdco. The bank has also received regulatory approvals to commence operations in Mozambique under the name Access Bank Mozambique, S.A. (Access Bank Mozambique).
Access Bank also announced that its subsidiary, Access Bank Mozambique, has entered into a definitive agreement with ABC Holdings Limited(ABC Holdings), a wholly owned subsidiary of Atlas Mara Limited (Atlas Mara) to acquire African Banking Corporation (Moҫambique), S.A., (BancABC Mozambique) for cash, in a combination of definitive and contingent consideration.
With its strategy of delivering a robust banking operation which connects key African markets, Access Bank has also entered into a definitive agreement with GroCapital Holdings (GroCapital) to invest into Grobank Limited over two tranches. The first is an initial cash consideration for a 49 per cent shareholding, increasing to a majority stake in the second tranche. Both tranches are subject to various regulatory approvals and the overall transaction subject to Grobank’s shareholder approvals.
GroCapital, whose shareholders include the Public Investment Corporation – Africa’s largest investment manager, and Fairfax Africa Holdings – a leading global investor, will retain an existing but diluted shareholding in Grobank.