Access Bank Plc, Africa’s biggest bank by customer base, is set to acquire an 83.4% stake in Kenya’s Sidian Bank. The acquisition is valued at 36.7 million USD which is about 15 billion NGN and 4.3 billion KES. The shares currently belong to Centum Investment Plc., a Kenyan investment company, and its subsidiary Bakki Holdco Ltd.
According to TechCabal, this will be the Nigerian bank’s second bank acquisition in Kenya. The first was in February 2020 when the bank acquired nearly 100% of Kenyan Transactional Bank Plc for 12.8 million USD (1.56 billion KES/ 5.4 billion NGN). Since then, Transactional Bank became Access Bank Kenya.
Roosevelt Ogbonna, the CEO of Access Bank said this deal will aid the bank’s efforts to strengthen its presence in Kenya and amp up its diversification and geographic earnings growth strategies. Access Bank also plans to consolidate Sidian Bank with Access Bank Kenya to form a stronger banking institution and make the latter a Tier 2 bank in Kenya.
“Through this transaction and the subsequent merger with Access Bank Kenya, we will be well placed to promote regional trade finance and other cross-border banking services,” said Ogbonna.
According to a statement released by Access Bank on Wednesday, the deal is still pending some regulatory approvals in Nigeria and Kenya. Access Bank also said the purchase consideration includes the price to book 110% based on the audited March 2022 shareholders’ equity of Sidian Bank.
Since its establishment as K-rep Bank in 1999 and rebranding to its current name in 2016, Sidian Bank has especially focused on small and medium enterprises and trade finance. Between 2012 and March 2022, the bank grew its balance sheet from 162.2 million USD (19 billion KES) to 256.2 million USD (30 billion KES).
James Mworia, Centum Investment CEO believes the deal will bring in required monetary value which can then be used to invest in other strategic sectors across East Africa.
“This transaction stands as one of the largest private equity transactions in East Africa and reflects a strong commitment by Access Bank to the future of the Kenyan economy,” he said. “It advances Centum’s vision to be Africa’s foremost investment channel, and bolsters our track record of attracting foreign investors into Kenya and the region to invest in extraordinary enterprises.’
Herbert Wigwe, the former CEO of Access Bank and current group chief executive of Access Corporation also considered the larger East African market. “The acquisition of Sidian is a significant step-up in scale and potential for Access Bank in Kenya which represents the largest market and trade corridor in East Africa,” said Wigwe.
Access Bank has previously acquired numerous banks across Nigeria and Africa. It acquired Diamond Bank Plc in 2018, a process which was completed in 2019. In 2020, it acquired Zambia’s Cavmont Bank Ltd. through a merger deal that was completed in 2021. In 2021, it acquired South Africa’s Grobank and 78.15% of African Banking Corporation of Botswana Ltd.