The Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) has sold Keystone Bank Limited, the last of the three nationalised banks to Sigma Golf Nigeria Limited and Riverbank Investment Resources Limited. It hinted that the new owners were a consortium of local investors.
The corporation noted yesterday that the new beneficiaries emerged preferred bidder after the acquisition of the bank’s shares. The new development came after regulatory approvals from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
AMCON, however, added that the completion of the transaction was now subject to the fulfillment of the conditions in the Sales and Purchase Agreement (SPA) executed between the bad debt company and the consortium.
The corporation said the process leading to the acquisition started with interest shown by 18 parties cutting across local and international investors. “The emergence of the Sigma Golf-Riverbank consortium resulted from a rigorous and competitive bidding process, which was coordinated for AMCON by Citibank Nigeria Limited, its affiliates and FBN Capital (Joint Financial Advisers) as well as Banwo & Ighodalo and Crosswrock Law (Joint Legal Advisers).”
After the inquest carried out by the Mallam Lamido Sanusi-led CBN in 2008, three of the 24 national banks that scaled the 2005 banking consolidation – Afribank Plc, Spring Bank Plc and Bank PHB failed a stress test.
These were, subsequently, nationalised by a special purpose vehicle that emerged in AMCON, imposing a new administration and rebranding them as Mainstreet Bank Limited, Enterprise Bank Limited and Keystone Bank Limited.
Keystone Bank was incorporated by the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) on August 3, 2011, after the takeover, while AMCON eventually capitalised it before appointing a board and an executive management team to lead the financial institution.
According to AMCON’s Head of Corporate Communications, Jude Nwauzor, as at April 2016, Keystone Bank had a staff strength of 1,753 employees, network of 154 branches, nine cash centres and 315 Automated Teller Machines.