Ghana approves take-over of ICB by First Bank of Nigeria
The Bank of Ghana (BOG) has approved the acquisition of Ghana’s International Commercial Bank (ICB) by the First Bank of Nigeria (FBN).
A statement by the BOG on Wednesday disclosed that the terms of the approval required the FBN to offload at least 40 per cent of the shares to Ghanaians through private placement or the Ghana Stock Exchange.
According to the statement, at least 25 per cent of the shares are expected to be off-loaded latest by Dec. 31, 2014, while the balance should be off loaded not later than Dec. 2016.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the take-over also include ICB’s subsidiaries in Gambia, Guinea, Senegal and Sierra-Leone.
The ICB is part of a group comprising a network of 12 banks spread through Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa.
The bank commenced operation in Ghana in 1996 with a focus on providing financial services to Small and Medium Scale enterprises.
Analysts say that the ICB’s acquisition by FBN is expected to give birth to one of the biggest SME- friendly banks in Ghana.
The FBN was two years ago rated the most valuable Nigerian bank and in 2012 the Brand Finance Banking League Tables rated it in the top 500 most valuable banking brands worldwide.
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