KENYA – Nigerian multinational commercial lender Access Bank Group, has disclosed a US$30.5 million investment in the Kenyan unit after buyout in 2020.
The investment came after Access Bank Group acquired 99.98 per cent stake of the then Transnational Bank in July 2020 at a total cash consideration of US$13.8 million.
The Nigerian Stock Exchange listed-listed lender renamed Transnational into Access Bank Kenya, which now trades as one of its 11 subsidiaries spread in Africa, and is seeking expansion and launch into new business lines.
The injection comes at a time the lender wants to strengthen the ratios of the lower-tier bank, launch into new counties, introduce fresh business lines and return it into profit territory.
Access Bank Group managing director Herbert Wigwe downplayed the US$18.6 million net loss posted by the Kenyan unit in 2020, up from US$521,819 in the previous period.
“Of course, as you know the Kenyan subsidiary only just started. What we have done is maybe some of the provisions coming from the prior Transnational Bank have been taken,” said Mr Wigwe.
Access Bank Kenya wants to launch into nine new counties this year as it sets eyes on acquiring more customers and serving new areas such as trade financing, SME lending and corporate banking.
“We are excited about the potential that exists in the East African market. We will leverage our presence in key payment corridors, and strong partnerships in non-presence countries to serve customers”Herbert Wigwe – Group Managing Director, Access Bank Group
Five counties — Kiambu, Meru, Machakos, Kisumu and Nyeri — will be given priority, followed by Nyandarua, Kakamega, Bungoma and Kisii.
Mr Wigwe said in October 2020 that the expansion aligns with the group strategy to become Africa’s gateway to the world.
“We are excited about the potential that exists in the East African market. We will leverage our presence in key payment corridors, and strong partnerships in non-presence countries to serve customers,” he said.
The expansion will see the bank reach 21 counties from the current 12 that are served by 24 branches.
Nairobi has the most branches (five) followed by Nakuru (four) and Uasin Gishu (three).
Mombasa and Nandi have two branches each while the remaining seven counties have one each.
Access Bank says the entire buyout deal was supposed to cost a total of US15 million, but it received a discount.
The Pan-African financial institution has made its intention of expanding its territory within Africa with acquisition of several banks in Zambia, South Africa, Mozambique, Kenya, Botswana, Rwanda and Cameroon.
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