- NIRSAL’s Commodity Initiative Gets N70bn Boost from Ecobank
The Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk-Sharing System for Agricultural Lending has signed a memorandum of understanding with Ecobank on N70bn portfolio commitment to agribusiness projects initiated by NIRSAL.
The facility will be drawn down in series, with the pact effectively kicking off with an initial N15bn agribusiness financing provision by Ecobank.
The commitment by Ecobank is the latest of NIRSAL’s focus on breaking the jinx of poor investment in agribusiness by the financial sector where banks are provided with strong incentives such as risk-sharing, technical assistance and innovative insurance.
A statement from NIRSAL on Thursday said the attraction for Ecobank, and indeed other commercial banks that have recently made portfolio commitments to NIRSAL-supported agribusiness projects are anchored on NIRSAL’s mapping-to-markets strategy.
The strategy was conceived to de-risk and make operations in commodity value chains more efficient through optimised primary production in a closed financing loop.
The Managing Director, NIRSAL, Aliyu Abdulhameed, said that Ecobank’s support demonstrates the growing acceptance of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s proposition of NIRSAL as an innovative mechanism targeted at providing a safe climate for highly profitable private sector investments.
Abdulhameed said, “This MoU signing marks the beginning of collaboration between NIRSAL and Ecobank on NIRSAL’s agribusiness initiatives and the development of products that will support lending to actors in the agricultural value chain in conformity with Ecobank’s risk acceptance criteria and credit process.
“With Ecobank’s commitment of N70bn portfolio to NIRSAL’s agribusiness initiatives, the bank and NIRSAL will jointly select and develop projects that meet the financing needs of actors in NIRSAL’s focal commodity value chains.”
The statement also quoted the Managing Director of Ecobank, Patrick Akinwuntan, as saying the bank was actively promoting agriculture as a strategic initiative to support national development.
Akinwuntan said Ecobank was committed to working with NIRSAL to open up the vast opportunities that abound in agriculture and to ensure citizens benefit ultimately.
He said, “The Federal Government had made it clear that investing in the agriculture sector is very critical for Nigeria to succeed, especially taking into consideration the natural endowment God granted us in terms of population, land and weather.
“We have the opportunity to make agriculture the economic spinner for Nigeria. What we are doing is to fulfil this policy direction of the Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria.”
FBN Holdings Boost First Bank CAR With N25 Billion Capital Injection
First Bank Boosts CAR With N25 Billion Capital Injection
FBN Holdings Plc announced it has boosted the Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) of its commercial banking subsidiary, First Bank of Nigeria Limited by N25 billion.
According to the statement released by the bank on the Nigerian Stock Exchange website, the capital injection represents part of the net proceeds of the company’s divestment from FBN Insurance Limited.
It noted that the capital injection upped the bank’s Capital Adequacy Ratio to 16.53 percent –before capitalising year to date profit– as at June 2020.
Oyewale Ariyibi, the Chief Financial Officer of the Company, was quoted as saying “the divestment is in line with the Group’s medium to long term strategic objectives. The divestment has unlocked significant value embedded in the former subsidiary which is being leveraged to strengthen the core banking business for which the Group is renowned“.
Ariyibi further stated that the Company’s objective is to increase capital across the Group in order to drive business growth, enhance efficiency and improve overall shareholders’ value.
Uk Eke, the Group Managing Director, who commented on the company’s performance for the first half of 2020 said “The H1 2020 financial results are impressive and reconfirm our consistent focus on enhanced shareholder value. Despite the difficult operating environment, the results demonstrate our capacity to deliver exceptional services to our customers in these uncertain times. Looking ahead, we remain cautious, but confident that our business is fundamentally strong to surmount any future challenge towards delivering superior financial performance“.
9mobile Joins MTN, Launches E-Sim Service
9mobile Launches E-Sim Service
Nigeria’s mobile network operators have joined the rest of the world in launching E-Sim, an embedded sim.
In July, MTN Nigeria set the ball rolling with the launching of its E-Sim trial. This was followed by 9mobile that launched its E-Sim earlier this month.
E-Sim is a form of an in-built sim that is embedded directly into a device without using a physical Sim.
Speaking on the new E-Sim, the Acting Director of Marketing, 9mobile, Layi Onafowokan, described the latest move as the most excellent experience that advanced technology provides.
According to him, the E-Sim is an in-built sim embedded in mobile devices in order to reduce the possibility of losing or damaging sim and eliminate the stress of dealing with the cutting of sim cards or finding adaptors.
It also enables multiple usage and adaptation of one subscriber profile across a broad range of mobile communication devices, internet of things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) apps including smart commuting, metering, tracking, and surveillance, rather than the restricted single-device use of the conventional SIM card.
Onafowokan said: “Customers can walk into any of our select 9mobile Experience Centres to request E-Sim activation. A QR code will be provided to scan and download E-Sim profile and perform the usual SIM registration.”
He added that customers that activate E-Sim service will enjoy up to 7GB data-free while those who want to change to E-Sim will only do a SIM swap at approved centres.
E-Sim is compatible with Google Device like Pixel 3, 3 XL, 4, and Pixel 4 XL. Apple Device like Iphone 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, Xs, Xs Max and Iphone XR. Samsung S20 Series.
Access Bank Enters Into Definitive Agreement With Cavmont Capital
Access Bank Signs Definitive Agreement With Cavmont Bank Ltd
Following July 8, 2020 announcement, the Board of Access Bank Plc on Thursday said its subsidiary, Access Bank Limited (Zambia) has entered into a definitive agreement with Cavmont Capital Holdings Zambia regarding the acquisition of Cavemont Bank Ltd.
In the statement released through the Nigerian Stock Exchange, the bank said the proposed acquisition will position Access Bank as one of the top 10 banks in Zambia and improve the bank’s momentum to advance its strategic objectives.
The bank said “This is a highly complementary transaction, combining ABZ’s wholesale and trade finance capabilities with Cavmonth Bank’s retail and commercial banking operations. Customers of the enlarged bank will benefit from greater security offered by what will be one of the most capitalised banks in Zambia with a more diversified product and service offering and a broader geographical footprint and infrastructure. The enlarged bank will be well-placed to participate in the long-term economic growth of Zambia, predicated on the country’s vast reserves of natural resources and fast-growing young population.”
The transaction agreement showed Access Bank Zambia will acquire the entire issued share capital, assets and liabilities of Cavmonth Bank while Capricorn Group Limited, majority shareholder of Cavmonth Capital Holdings, will invest around $16.5 million or ZMW300 million of preference shares into Access Bank Zambia.
According to the bank, the transaction is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Speaking on the transaction, Herbert Wigwe, the Group Managing Director, Access Bank Plc, said “Access Bank is focused on building the scale needed to become a leading bank in its key operating markets through leveraging the right partnerships. This transaction underscores our approach and is another stepping stone towards delivering on our strategic aspirations of becoming the World’s Most Respected African Bank and Africa’s Gateway to the World. It will strengthen our presence in Zambia, while furthering our footprint for growth in the COMESA region, Africa’s largest free trade area.
“Over the years, we have worked hard to build a sustainable international bank of African origin that can expand the potential of businesses, support economic prosperity, facilitate trade and investment and extend the power of banking to millions of people who do not yet have the financial tools to achieve their dreams. This proposed transaction aligns with that strategy”.
Thinus Prinsloo, Managing Director of Capricorn Group, also said: “Access Bank is an African banking group with an impressive growth trajectory and geographic reach across Africa and internationally. This transaction is an excellent strategic fit with Cavmont Bank’s presence in Zambia and will strengthen the capital base from which to achieve long-term sustainable growth. Zambia is an economy with th potential that is poised for a robust recovery, and this combination best positions the combined bank to harness these opportunities“.
Peet van der Walt, the Managing Director of Cavmont Bank, explained that: “Cavmont Bank’s vision is to be a world-class bank, rated amongst the best in Zambia. This proposed merger with Access Bank Zambia accelerates our strategy and positions us as a top ten bank in the country. As a subsidiary of one of the largest banking groups in Africa, Access Bank Zambia has the scale, capabilities and ambition to enable the combined bank to pursue exciting strategic opportunities in Zambia.
“Our customers will benefit from greater security offered by one of the most capitalised banks in the country, increased scale in Zambia, access to a broader digital and retail offering, and a geographic network across the continent. We look forward to working closely with Access Bank to deliver the benefits of the merger to all the stakeholders.” Shareholders should note that the cautionary announcement dated July 8, 2020 is hereby withdrawn and shareholders are no longer required to exercise caution when dealing in the group’s shares in relation to the potential transaction.”
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