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Equity Group’s expansion in DRC can help spark economic growth: Group CEO James Mwangi

The company has acquired an additional 7.7-percent stake in its subsidiary, Equity Bank Congo.

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Equity Bank Grop CEO James Mwangi.

Equity Group Holdings Plc. has acquired an additional 7.7-percent stake worth $9 million in its Congolese subsidiary, Equity Bank Congo (EBC), from Germany’s sovereign wealth fund KfW

EBC was formerly called ProCredit, a German-owned bank. 

The acquisition is part of Equity Group’s strategy to consolidate its banking subsidiaries in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), raising its stake in EBC to 94.3 percent, Business Daily reported.

Equity Group has two subsidiaries in the DRC, the second- and fourth-largest banks in the country. They include EBC and Banque Commerciale Du Congo (BCDC). The merger of the two banks would produce a bank with a balance sheet of more than $2 billion, contributing over 20 percent of the group’s total balance sheet.

“We are glad that we now have the size and countrywide infrastructure that can bring our experience and capability to contribute significantly to the transformation of lives and livelihoods in DRC while stimulating the economic transformation of the country through resource allocation,” Hapa Kenya reported Equity Group CEO James Mwangi as saying. 

Mwangi added that “the addition of an amalgamation with BCDC will put Equity Group Holdings Plc on the path to become a Kshs 1 trillion balance sheet business that will benefit from economies of scale.”

As of January 2015, three corporate entities jointly owned 79 percent of Procredit’s stock, including Procredit Bank, the German Investment Corporation and Stichting DOEN. The remaining 21 percent was held by KfW and the International Finance Corporation, which owned 12 percent and 9 percent, respectively.

“Post-merger, Equity holds 75.5 percent in EquityBCDC with the remainder being held by IFC (International Finance Corporation), the government of DRC and other minority shareholders,” Equity Group announced in a statement reported by Hapa Kenya.

In 2020, Equity Group announced the completion of its acquisition of a 66.53-percent stake in BCDC, the country’s oldest bank, for $95 million.

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Nigerian billionaire Abdul Samad Rabiu unveils $23.8-million security support fund

It is the single largest donation to a philanthropic cause made by a Nigerian businessman.

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Abdul Samad Rabiu. ©Billionaires.Africa

Nigerian billionaire businessman Abdul Samad Rabiu has announced the creation of the N10-billion ($23.8 million) Nigeria Security Support Fund through his philanthropic organization, the Abdul Samad Rabiu Africa Initiative (ASR Africa). He unveiled the project during a meeting with Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari at the Aso Rock presidential residence in Abuja.

Rabiu launched the initiative to provide security equipment and medical and other supplies to the families of soldiers fighting terrorists in Nigeria’s northeast, and to strengthen local infrastructure.

The contribution marks the single largest donation to a philanthropic cause made by a Nigerian businessman, and follows the $3-million development initiative that Rabiu launched in Niger three weeks ago through ASR Africa. Last week, Rabiu received the Commander of the Order of Merit of Niger Award in recognition of his contributions to the country of Niger and its people.

Rabiu also praised Buhari for creating an enabling environment for businesses to thrive. He cited policies implemented by his administration, which, he said, aided the growth of his manufacturing conglomerate, BUA Group, which is one of the continent’s fastest-growing commercial groups.

He also promised to support the administration’s efforts in industrial development and security.

Rabiu established ASR Africa in April 2021 to promote long-term, impact-driven solutions to developmental issues affecting health, educational, and social development across Africa.

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Mike Adenuga beats out Abdul Samad Rabiu to reemerge as Nigeria’s second-richest billionaire

His net worth has dropped by more than $400 million this year as Globacom’s share price sank.

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Mike Adenuga. ©Billionaires.Africa

Telecom mogul Mike Adenuga has reemerged as Nigeria’s second-richest man after three weeks in the third position. Now, he trails only Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote, who tops the list of Nigeria’s wealthiest people, with a net worth of $19.8 billion.

The leading businessman, who is the founder of Nigeria’s second-largest telecom services provider Globacom, has surpassed billionaire industrialist Abdul Samad Rabiu, whose net worth has fallen from more than $7 billion to $5.8 billion in less than three months.

Adenuga’s reemergence as Africa’s second-richest man comes nearly two months after an exclusive report by Billionaires.Africa confirmed that Rabiu had surpassed the telecom and oil mogul to become the country’s second-wealthiest billionaire.

According to Forbes, Adenuga, who derives the majority of his fortune from his mobile phone network, Globacom, and his oil exploration company, Conoil Plc, has surpassed Rabiu as Nigeria’s richest man, with a net worth of $6.3 billion, compared to Rabiu’s $5.8 billion.

Adenuga, like Rabiu, has recorded a significant decline in his net worth in recent months. However, his the drop in his wealth has been less severe than Rabiu’s, who has lost more than $1.2 billion of his fortune over the past two months.

The revaluation of his interest in Globacom has caused his net worth to fall by more than $400 million since the start of the year, from $6.7 billion to $6.3 billion at the time of writing.

Nearly two weeks ago, Conoil reported a double-digit percent increase in earnings in the first half of 2022 despite a significant decrease in top-line performance during the period under review.

Despite a double-digit decline in revenue, profit increased by 70.5 percent to N1.81 billion ($4.35 million) in the first half of 2022 from N1.06 billion ($2.55 million) in the first half of 2021, according to the company’s half-year financial report.

The group’s cost-cutting strategies, which reduced sales-related, administrative, and distribution costs, can be attributed to its double-digit increase in earnings as management continued to create value for shareholders.

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Billionaire Gbenga Agboola’s Flutterwave faces allegations of financial impropriety amid IPO plans

Despite the allegations, the firm is continuing to prepare for its IPO.

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Olugbenga Agboola.

Flutterwave is under fire and facing allegations of financial misdeeds, including money laundering, insider trading, fraud, and perjury.

The news comes as the company prepares to list its shares in an IPO, which will allow investors to purchase shares of the company on the open market.

Agboola, a well-known tech entrepreneur and billionaire, is the CEO of Flutterwave, a technology firm with offices in San Francisco and Nigeria. In just one year, the six-year-old tech firm’s valuation has surged to $3 billion under his leadership.

According to sources familiar with the situation, the tech firm has begun searching for investors for its planned IPO in the United States and possibly Nigeria. However, because the talks are still in the early stages, it has not yet mandated financial advisers.

The preparations for the startup’s IPO come amid allegations of financial impropriety. Recently, more than $52.5 million in cash deposits were frozen across 62 bank accounts owned by the startup and four Kenyans on suspicion of being the proceeds of card fraud and money laundering.

Patrick Njoroge, the governor of the Central Bank of Kenya, stated nearly two weeks ago that Agboola’s Flutterwave is providing remittance services and operating payment businesses in Kenya without the necessary licenses.

The statement has been characterized as a regulatory setback that may have an impact on the operations of the fintech behemoth and the expansion of the African fintech ecosystem. Njoroge named Chipper Cash, another African fintech heavyweight, as one company that is not permitted to operate remittance businesses, or to provide payment services to merchants in Kenya.

Despite the allegations, Flutterwave CFO Oneal Bhambani, who joined the company in June, stated that preparations for the firm’s IPO are continuing.

“Operationally, we are putting in place all aspects of controls, processes, and infrastructure to prepare for an IPO subject to market conditions,” he said. “Given Flutterwave’s market position and strong balance sheet, the company has a significant growth opportunity over the next few years.” 

Experts believe that waiting until at least next year to address the allegations will benefit Flutterwave, and that its valuation will be higher if investors are given sufficient time to rebalance, as all attention is presently focused on the global market downturn.

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