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How Distressed Oil Sector Loans Damaged Diamond Bank

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Diamond Bank
  • How Distressed Oil Sector Loans Damaged Diamond Bank

More facts have emerged on the reasons why the defunct Diamond Bank surrendered itself for a business combination deal with Access Bank Plc.

The deal was consummated on April 1.

According to a report obtained yesterday, between December 2014 and June 2018, the immediate past management of Diamond Bank under the leadership of Mr. Uzoma Dozie as Chief Executive Officer, inherited a distressed oil and gas portfolio of $1.8 billion (N302.6 billion).

Of this amount, the sum under Watch list and non-performing loans (NPLs) stood at $406 million (N68.9 billion) and $73 million (or N12.3 billion), respectively.

In addition, the bank had foreign currency balance sheet mismatch in excess of $883 million as at October 31, 2015, resulting from maturing trade obligations and customer transactional instructions.

Similarly, Diamond Bank had unpaid billions of naira to the federal government’s Treasury Single Account (TSA), resulting to regulatory sanctions and negative public perception and waning customer confidence.

The immediate past management of the defunct bank preserved Diamond Bank’s licence by paying down the inherited forex liquidity mismatch, it stated.

Furthermore, it showed that the inability of Diamond Bank to repay the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation/Nigerian Petroleum Development Company Limited’s funds to the TSA, “due to the application of those funds in the creation of long-term oil and gas and power loans was a major threat to the bank’s corporate existence.”

Without external management, the then management of the bank employed every legitimate means, including strong negotiation and relationship management skills to have the issue resolved.

According to the report, as at the end of September 2018, this obligation had been fully extinguished.

While resolving this, the Uzoma Dozie-led management built an enviable retail franchise that, stand-alone, can generate sustainable profitability and low-cost deposits.

However, the value of the retail deposit was hidden in bad corporate loans inherited by the then management.

In addition, the management then developed long-term sustainable relationship with global institutions, which has helped to build thrust in its brand.

These included Women’s World Banking, Bills and Melinda Gates Foundation, Afreximbank, International Finance Corporation, Ecowas International and Development Bank, among others.

Commenting on the merger with Diamond Bank, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Access Bank, Mr. Herbert Wigwe, had said: “Together, we would have 27 million customers, which is the largest customer base of any bank on the continent. We would have 33,000 point of sale (PoS) terminals, 3,300 automated teller machines (ATMs) and all of that.

“Access Bank has grown over time and has built a very strong wholesale banking capability. We have also shown significant expertise as far as treasury is concerned, risk management as well as our capital management plan.

“We created and pushed a very strong value chain strategy which was our own way of building our retail business.

“This was because we realised that the creation of a large diversified bank is critical, not just for Nigeria, but in Africa and the world. If you go to any part of the world, what you tend to see is that the top three or top five banks technically control market share.”

Speaking further, Wigwe said the combination of Access Bank and Diamond Bank would ensure that “we are able to take and solve customers’ issues right from the wholesale end, down to the man in the village, just because of the use of technology.”

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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MTN Nigeria, Gameloft Partner to Increase Access to Variety of Exciting Games

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MTN Nigeria announced it has partnered with Gameloft, a leader in the development and publishing of games, to increase access to a variety of fun and exciting games online.

The telecommunications giant in collaboration with its new partner, Gameloft announced the launch of MTN Gameworld, a new gaming platform for its subscribers.

According to MTN, the new platform will allow the Nigerian growing gaming community access to a lot of unique games online through an extensive premium catalogue from Gameloft and other renowned publishers.

Commenting on the partnership, Srinivas Rao, the Chief Digital Officer, MTN Nigeria, said, “We are constantly seeking to deliver innovative products that support the aspirations of our customers, whilst delivering superior user experience. This partnership allows us to provide our customers with access to a variety of exhilarating games from Gameloft and other leading publishers at an affordable rate.”

MTN Gameworld will allow subscribed customers access to a variety of games, which they can play at subsidised data rates through the MTN Gameworld app. Android, iOS and Windows phone users can subscribe via SMS, app, web, USSD menu (*447#), 131 USSD menu and any other MTN customer channel.

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President Buhari Commissions 5,000bpd Modular Refinery Built in Imo State

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday commissioned the 5,000 barrels per day modular refinery built by Waltersmith Group in Imo State.

President Buhari, who commissioned the new modular refinery virtually, said the refinery will enable Nigeria to export petroleum products to neighbouring countries and other markets.

The 5,000 barrels per day Waltersmith Modular Refinery is the first phase of 50,000 barrels per day combined capacity plant planned for Imo State, according to the Group.

Buhari commended Waltersmith Group, an indigenous oil firm, and the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board for the collaboration that led to the actualisation of the modular refinery.

President Buhari, therefore, directed the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the Department of Petroleum Resources and all other relevant government agencies to provide Waltersmith all the necessary support in terms of access to crude oil and condensate feedstock.

Buhari said, “We rolled out our refining roadmap in 2018, to address challenges in the downstream sector. After many years of government giving out modular refining licences without any coming on-stream, we are today seeing a commissioning within two years.

“The plan to commence the expansion of this refinery to 50,000bpd capacity, to refine crude oil and condensate, is a demonstration of the economic reform Nigeria is undergoing.

“The realisation of the refinery roadmap will ultimately lead us to becoming a net exporter of petroleum products, not only to our neighbouring countries but to other wide markets,” he said.

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Elon Musk Net Worth Jumps by $100 Billion this Year to Topple Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Others 

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Elon Musk, the Chief Executive Officer and founder of Tesla, is now the world’s second-richest person following another surge in the price of Tesla share.

Musk total net worth jumped by $7.6 billion to $110 billion between November 16 and 17 to dethrone Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, from the third position.

Since then, Tesla stock has been on a bullish run and in the last 24 hours added $7.24 billion to Elon Musk’s total net worth, according to Bloomberg Billionaire Index. Bringing the billionaire’s total net worth to $128 billion.

Elon Musk’s net worth rose from just $28 billion in January 2020 to $128 billion on November 24, 2020, representing an increase of $100 billion, the highest by any billionaire.

Musk has finally toppled Bill Gates as the second richest person and for the first time, Bill Gates is the third richest man in the world. This is the first time in almost 40 years that Gates will be in the third position.

Billionaires listed on Bloomberg Index have collectively gained $1.3 trillion this year.

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