Home » Jim Ovia gains $61.3 million in 110 days as Zenith Bank shares rise 29 percent on NGX

Jim Ovia gains $61.3 million in 110 days as Zenith Bank shares rise 29 percent on NGX

by Feyisayo Ajayi
Jim Ovia

Nigerian billionaire banker Jim Ovia’s net worth has increased significantly in the past 110 days due to a multimillion-dollar increase in the market value of his equity holdings in Zenith Bank Plc.

As shares in Zenith Bank, Nigeria’s most profitable bank, continue to rise after falling to a record low of N19 on Oct. 5, Ovia, a leading Nigerian banker and one of the country’s richest men, has seen the market value of his stake in the banking group rise by $61.3 million.

Zenith Bank is a leading financial services provider in Nigeria and anglophone West Africa, licensed as a commercial bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria. It is presently Nigeria’s most profitable bank and the Nigerian Exchange’s largest listed financial services group.

Ovia, who founded the tier-one bank in 1990 and has played a pivotal role in both the evolution and digital transformation of Nigerian banking, owns a sizable 16.2-percent stake in the leading financial services group, or 5,072,104,311 ordinary shares.

The Nigerian billionaire banker, who was worth nearly $1 billion in 2013, has seen a significant increase in the market value of his 16.2-percent stake in Zenith Bank.

As of Jan. 23, the value of his stake had risen to N124.3 billion ($273.06 million), a gain of N27.9 billion ($61.3 million). This can be attributed to a 29-percent increase in Zenith Bank’s share price, which went from N19 ($0.042) on Oct. 5 to N24.5 ($0.054).

The multimillion-dollar increase in the market value of Ovia’s stake is directly attributed to the impressive 29-percent surge in Zenith Bank’s share price from N19 ($0.042) on Oct. 5 to N24.5 ($0.054) at the time of this report.

This significant increase in the bank’s share price on the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) has propelled it to become the seventh most valuable company on the local bourse. The impressive performance on the stock market can be linked to its consistent and robust financial results, which continue to garner the attention and investment of both institutional and individual investors.

Zenith Bank reported a profit after tax of N174.33 billion ($399 million) for the first nine months of its 2022 fiscal year, a significant 8.55-percent increase from the previous year’s N160.6 billion ($367.5 million).

This growth was primarily driven by strong performance in core banking operations, which led to a 20-percent increase in interest income from N518.7 billion ($1.2 billion) to N620.57 billion ($1.42 billion). Additionally, the bank saw an increase in fee and commission income from N78.3 billion ($179.2 million) to N100.06 billion ($229 million),

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