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Horn of Africa

Shares of Kenyan investment banker Jimnah Mbaru in Britam gain $1 million

The gains are the result of an upward trend in the group’s shares on the Nairobi Stock Exchange.

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Kenyan investment banker Jimnah Mbaru.

Kenyan investment banker Jimnah Mbaru has seen his stake in Britam Holding Plc, one of the country’s largest diversified financial services groups, surge by $1 million in 42 days.

The gains are the result of an upward trend in the group’s shares on the Nairobi Stock Exchange, as high investor demands for value stocks drove up prices on the local bourse.

Britam Holding is a leading diversified financial services group in Kenya, with a market capitalization of about $170 million (Ksh18.3 billion).

Mbaru, the group’s director and a former director of the Nairobi Securities Exchange, holds a total equity stake of 194,800,100 ordinary shares in Britam Holding.

His stake in the group makes him the single largest individual shareholder.

Britam Holding has grown into a top player in the financial services sector, with decades of experience offering financial products and services to clients in Kenya and East Africa.

The group operates subsidiaries in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, South Sudan, Mozambique and Malawi. It offers asset management, life assurance, retirement planning, general insurance, health insurance, banking and property insurance.

Britam Holding had losses of $90 million (Ksh9.7 billion) in 2020, compared to a profit of $43 million (Ksh4.6 billion) the previous year. It suffered a fair valuation loss of $21 million (Ksh2.3 billion) due to poor equity performance and another $18.5 million (Ksh2.0 billion) related to property impairments.

An unfavorable operating climate also adversely impacted its investment in HF Group Plc, resulting in losses. Britam Holding’s investment in HF Group contributed to a loss of about 7.6 million (Ksh823 million), as well as a $5.5-million (Ksh603 million) reduction in its investment value.

Despite the company’s poor financial performance in 2020, its shares increased from $0.062 (Ksh6.70) on April 29 when its results were released to $0.067 (Ksh7.26) at the opening of the market on June 11.

The gains in the company’s shares have seen Mbaru’s stake surge by $1 million (Ksh 110 million).

Its market value has increased from $12.1 million (Ksh1.31 billion) on April 29 to $13.1 million (Ksh1.41 billion) at the opening of the market today.

Horn of Africa

Somali multimillionaire businessman Ismail Ahmed seeks funding at $5-billion valuation

WorldRemit is a cross-border digital payments platform that provides money transfer services.

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Somali multimillionaire businessman Ismail Ahmed.

The globally acclaimed fintech company WorldRemit is seeking to raise funding at a valuation of $5 billion ahead of a potential IPO, Bloomberg reported.

WorldRemit is a cross-border digital payments platform that provides international money transfer and remittance services in 130 countries and more than 70 currencies. 

The London-based fintech startup was co-founded in 2010 by Somaliland-born British multimillionaire Ismail Ahmed, Catherine Wines and Richard Igoe. It launched first in Somaliland.

Anonymous insiders revealed that the company is in talks with investors over the latest funding round, although the deal has not yet been concluded and the terms still could change, media report.

Nevertheless, an IPO could potentially arrive as early as 2022.

Since WorldRemit launched in Somaliland*, diaspora remittances have grown significantly in the dysfunctional state, which relies heavily on money sent from abroad to run its economy.

As of 2020, the government recorded a 15-percent surge in diaspora remittances, amounting to $1.3 billion.

In April, Ahmed launched a $500-million (Sh54.2 billion) fund to support education, healthcare and infrastructure development in Somaliland through his Sahamiye Foundation.

The fintech company said at the time that the initiative would help Somaliland move past “traditional models of donor funding and towards a more entrepreneurial, scale-up approach.”

The Sahamiye Foundation is based in London and Hargeisa, the capital of Somaliland.

Since its founding in 2010, WorldRemit has grown into a popular brand in the global space, particularly in Africa. It boasts more than 5.7 million customers.

For Ahmed, founding WorldRemit was the culmination of 20 years of experience in the money transfer industry and job-role with international lenders.

*Somaliland, or the Republic of Somaliland, is an unrecognized sovereign state in the Horn of Africa. Internationally, the country is still considered to be a part of Somalia.

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Horn of Africa

Rebecca Mbithi plans to expand Family Bank after corporate bond trading on Nairobi bourse

The move comes after the bank raised $39 million against a $27.8-million target in its issued bond.

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Family Bank CEO Rebecca Mbithi.

Family Bank Limited CEO Rebecca Mbithi plans to expand the bank’s presence to 47 more counties, while eyeing tier-1 status. It will achieve this by using the proceeds of a corporate bond that it traded on the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) on June 30, Business Daily reported.

Mbithi is the bank’s managing director and CEO. She was appointed in February 2019.

In a statement on the NSE, Mbithi said: “We target to be in every county though we recognize that it’s not a determinant to being a tier-1 or II bank.” 

The move came in June after the bank raised Ksh 4.42 billion ($39 million) against a Ksh 3-billion ($27.8 million) target in its issued bond, with a 5.5-year maturity tenure. 

The 147.3-percent oversubscription was raised by local fund managers, banks, retail investors, insurance companies and other institutional investors.

According to Mbithi, the capital raised will be used to support the bank’s digitization, which will help grow and scale out customer numbers, strengthen the balance sheet to increase lending to small- and medium-sized enterprises and finance its entry into regional markets.

Family Bank will use the funds to increase its branch network from the 92 existing outlets in 37 counties. 

It also plans to expand its presence and consumer base as it considers public placement. This is because the Capital Market Authority of Kenya has allowed the bank to take from investors the Ksh3 billion ($27.8 million) approved for the first bond tranche and an extra Ksh1 billion ($9.3 million) offered by the same pool of investors as a greenshoe option.*

Family Bank is a tier-II capital, or medium-sized, commercial bank in Kenya founded in 1984. It became a commercial bank in 2007 following the issuance of a banking license by the Central Bank of Kenya.

As of 2017, its total assets were valued at KSh 69.12 billion ($696 million at the time).

*A greenshoe option allows a group of investment banks that underwrite an initial public offering (IPO) to buy and offer for sale 15-percent more shares at the same offering price than the issuing company originally planned to sell.

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Horn of Africa

Ethiopia-born billionaire Mohammed Al-Amoudi’s net worth declines by $850 million in 53 days

Al-Amoudi’s net worth has dropped from $7.56 billion to $7.54 billion since the start of the year.

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Ethiopia-born billionaire Mohammed Al-Amoudi.

The net worth of Ethiopia-born billionaire Mohammed Al-Amoudi has declined by $850 million in 53 days.

The Bloomberg Billionaire Index revealed that Al-Amoudi, who had an estimated net worth of $7.56 billion at the start of the year, has seen his wealth decline to $7.54 billion.  

The $850-million loss came not long after his wealth surged to a record nine-month high of $8.76 billion on May 18. Since then, his net worth has declined to $7.44 billion before a recent resurgence above the $7.5-billion mark. 

The billionaire, who owns Preem, Sweden’s largest oil refiner, has seen his net-worth drop from $8.39 billion on May 1 to $7.54 billion today, June 24, as of the time of the drafting of this report, 2:00 pm (UTC+1).

The decline translates to a loss of $850 million for the Ethiopian-born billionaire, who was ousted by Nigerian cement tycoon Aliko Dangote in 2013 as the wealthiest black person in the world.

Al-Amoudi’s fortune is derived mainly from closely held companies in Sweden, Saudi Arabia and Ethiopia. He owns Svenska Petroleum, Midroc Europe (a construction and property group) and Preem (his most valuable asset) through the wholly-owned Petroswede AB.

Because there are no indications of outside partners in these companies, it is assumed that Al-Amoudi closely holds all three. They are valued using the most recent financial information and results, industry-specific metrics and macroeconomic indicators.

Al-Amoudi’s net worth of $7.54 billion makes him the 367th richest man in the world behind British real-estate mogul Charles Cadogan, chairman of Cadogan Group, who is $30-million richer.

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