Home » Access Bank’s acquisition of BancABC Mozambique step to pan-African scale: Group CEO

Access Bank’s acquisition of BancABC Mozambique step to pan-African scale: Group CEO

by Ishioma Emi

Following its acquisition of Grobank South Africa, Access Bank Group has completed the acquisition of African Banking Corporation Mozambique (BancABC Mozambique), a subsidiary of the London Stock Exchange-listed group, Atlas Mara Ltd. 

According to an announcement issued by the company’s Secretary Sunday Ekwochi, the acquisition was made by Access Bank’s wholly-owned banking subsidiary in Mozambique.

In a comment, Access Bank Group Managing Director and CEO Herbert Wigwe said the acquisition significantly strengthens the bank’s operations in Mozambique.

According to Wigwe, it represents a transformational step in the bank’s development plans in the country and the broader Southern Africa region.

The transaction, which will see the integration and merger of Access Bank Mozambique with the operations of BancABC Mozambique, is expected to create the seventh-largest bank in the Mozambican banking sector.

Wigwe explained that Access Bank is building the scale necessary to compete effectively in targeted African markets outside Nigeria. This strategic decision, he said, will ensure that the company sustainably delivers a strong return on invested capital through its pan-African expansion.

“Scale is an important contributor to returns, and this transaction is consistent with our rigorous efforts to create a strong presence with scale across Africa, and in line with our vision to be the World’s Most Respected African Bank,” Wigwe said.

Aside from its deals in Rwanda, Tanzania and Zambia, Access Bank has leveraged Atlas Mara’s restructuring plans. This was seen in a recent, definitive agreement to acquire 78.15 percent of Atlas Mara’s issued share capital with Botswana’s fifth-largest bank, BancABC Ltd.

The deal, which is set to close in the first half of 2021, will expand Access Bank’s African presence to 10 countries. 

Access Bank is also a potential buyer interested in acquiring Atlas Mara’s 49.97-percent holding in Nigeria’s sixth-largest lender, Union Bank Nigeria Plc.

The completion of the deal will cement the bank’s status in its primary market of Nigeria as the largest lender in terms of assets.

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