Home » Nigerian banker Herbert Wigwe gains $6.5 million as Access Bank shares surge

Nigerian banker Herbert Wigwe gains $6.5 million as Access Bank shares surge

by Omokolade Ajayi

Nigerian multimillionaire banker Herbert Wigwe has gained N2.66 billion ($6.46 million) in 115 days, as renewed interest in Access Bank sent the lender’s shares up by double digits on the Nigerian Exchange.

As of press time, 1:45 PM (UTC), Aug. 23, shares in the leading lender were trading at N9.05 ($0.0220), 56-basis points higher than its opening price of N9.00 ($0.02186) for the day.

In recent times, Access Bank’s shares have increased from N7.30 ($0.01773) on April 30 to N9.05 ($0.0220) as of the drafting of this report.

This translates to a 24-percent gain for shareholders in 115 days.

The double-digit growth in the bank’s shares between April 30 and Aug. 23 has caused its market capitalization to increase by N62.20 billion ($151.16 million), returning double-digit gains to shareholders.

Wigwe, who holds a beneficial stake of 1.52 billion shares in the bank, has seen the market value of his stake increase from N11.08 billion ($26.93 million) on April 30 to N13.74 billion ($33.38 million) on Aug. 23.

This translates to a gain of N2.66 billion ($6.46 million) for the multimillionaire banker in 115 days.

Access Bank is one of the five largest banks in Nigeria in terms of assets, loans, deposits and branch network.

The bank’s shares have been on the rise since April 30, as investors remain optimistic about its financial performance following the acquisition of new banks in line with its commitment to become Africa’s gateway to the world.

Aside from the swing of optimism surrounding the bank’s recent acquisition of South Africa’s Grobank and its expansion outside of the country, the 24-percent gain in the bank’s shares can be linked to investor expectations regarding its H1 2021 financial results.

In the Q1 2021, Access Bank recorded a 30-percent growth in its profit to N60.1 billion ($145.71 million).

The bank’s profit growth came off a six-percent improvement in gross earnings to N222.1 billion ($538.44 million) and its cost strategies, which kept operating expenses flat despite inflationary pressures from its operating environment.

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