Acquisition of four African banks by Equity to cost Ksh. 12 billion less after discount

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Equity Bank Group CEO Dr.James Mwangi.
Equity Bank Group CEO Dr.James Mwangi.

Equity Bank’s plans to acquire four lenders in Rwanda, Zambia Mozambique and Tanzania from London listed firm Atlas Mara Limited has been greatly boosted after the UK company revealed that it would offer Equity a Ksh. 12 billion discount on the asking price of the four banks.

According to the Business Daily, Atlas marked down the value of the four banks after the Equity deal prompted a due diligence on their financial health.

Equity is set to use share swap deals to acquire a 62 percent share in Banque Populaire du Rwanda, BancABC Tanzania and Mozambique and Atlas Mara Zambia. On the other hand Equity will offer 6.72 percent of its shares worth Ksh. 10.9 billion to Atlas Mara, which is half of what the UK firm had asked for before.

“Confirmatory due diligence has been substantially concluded and the group expects to announce the final terms of the transaction in due course,” Atlas Mara said in trading report to the London Stock Exchange.

Once the acquisition is completed, , Equity’s workforce is expected to increase by around 2,641 employees, raising the bank’s total staff count to 8,959 employees. Banque Populaire du Rwanda currently has a workforce of 1,000 employees while BancABC Tanzania and Mozambique have 532 and 278 workers under their employment respectively. Atlas Mara Zambia on the other hand is home to 831 employees. The 2,641 employees will add on to Equity Bank’s workforce which stood at 6,318 as at the year ended December 2018, the largest among financial services providers in the country.

The four banks to be assimilated by Equity similarly have a total of 822,000 customers, a combined loan book of Ksh.51.8 billion and deposits worth Ksh.96 billion.

Acquisition of the four banks will without a doubt expand the portfolio of countries in which Equity currently operates in to eight with the bank already set up in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, South Sudan, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

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