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Fidelity Bank Set to Acquire Union Bank UK, Gets $40m Afreximbank’s Facility

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African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced the disbursement of a US$40-million Intra-African Investment Facility to Fidelity Bank Nigeria Plc (“Fidelity”) to support Fidelity Bank’s acquisition and recapitalization of Union Bank UK as part of its international expansion programme.

Provided in two tranches of US$20 million each, the first tranche of the facility is to enable Fidelity part-refinance the acquisition of 100 per cent equity stake in Union Bank UK, while the second tranche is used to support its recapitalisation via the injection of additional equity into the acquired bank, as approved by the United Kingdom’s regulator.

With this acquisition, Fidelity Bank is able to birth a new pan-African financial institution capable of providing correspondent banking and offshore banking services to banks in Africa and servicing the banking needs of Africans in the Diaspora.

Commenting on the transaction, Kanayo Awani, Executive Vice President, Intra-African Trade Bank and Export Development Bank, Afreximbank, noted that the disbursement of the facility was part of Afreximbank’s effort to promote African control and ownership of capital while improving intra-African trade and investments.

“Fidelity Bank’s acquisition of Union Bank UK aligned with Afreximbank’s Intra-African Investment Facility. It was a significant milestone for both institutions, reinforcing African ownership and control within the global financial landscape,” Mrs. Awani said.

“By supporting this strategic transaction, we are not only bolstering Nigeria’s banking sector but also fostering greater financial integration between Africa and its Diaspora. This initiative is a testament to our commitment to enhancing intra-African trade, promoting economic stability and driving forward the objectives of Agenda 2063 for a prosperous and self-reliant Africa,” she added.

Awani stated that Afreximbank’s Bank Acquisition Strategy, empowers African entities to acquire financial assets divested by foreign entities in Africa and the Diaspora. This is also in line with the Bank’s Diaspora Strategy, which seeks to promote and finance the integration of the African Diaspora with the rest of the continent.

She noted that, through the facility, Fidelity is extending its services to the UK, in particular, to Africans and African-owned businesses in the UK, including products to support Diaspora investments. In the words of the MD/CEO of Fidelity Bank, Mrs. Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe: “We are very thankful to Afreximbank for supporting our expansionary initiatives for international growth. It is, indeed, the result of a strong partnership between the two institutions over the years that has produced this good outcome. The refinancing of the Union Bank (UK) acquisition by Afreximbank will unlock additional value and help create a scalable and more sustaining service franchise that will support trade businesses in Africa and Diaspora banking.”

The acquisition is expected to contribute to Africa’s economic growth and development by increasing intra- and extra-African trade finance and trade flows between Nigeria and the UK, supporting the integration of the African Diaspora into regional and continental supply chains and enabling small and medium-sized enterprises across the continent to improve their export competitiveness and light export manufacturing capabilities.

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Business

Record Financial Performance: Fidelity Bank Plc Promotes 11% of Workforce

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Leading financial institution, Fidelity Bank Plc has announced the promotion of 11% of its workforce, a testament to the exceptional performance and dedication of its employees.
This significant move follows the release of the bank’s 2023 full year Audited Financial Statements, which reported an impressive 131.5 percent growth in Profit Before Tax (PBT) to N124.26 billion.
The recent promotions span every level within the bank, reflecting Fidelity Bank Plc’s commitment to recognizing and rewarding excellence across its entire organization. This strategic initiative has garnered positive reactions from staff members, who see it as a validation of their hard work and contribution to the bank’s remarkable financial achievements.
In addition to the promotions, Fidelity Bank Plc has also concluded arrangements to raise a total of N127.1 billion through a Rights Issue to existing shareholders and a Public Offer. This move is part of the bank’s broader strategy to strengthen its capital base, support future growth, and enhance shareholder value.
Fidelity Bank Plc’s impressive financial performance and the subsequent employee promotions highlight the bank’s robust operational strategy and its commitment to fostering a rewarding work environment. By investing in its people and ensuring their career growth, the bank continues to build a motivated and high-performing workforce.
Ranked as one of the best banks in Nigeria, Fidelity Bank Plc is a full-fledged customer commercial bank with over 8.5 million customers serviced across its 251 business offices in Nigeria and the United  Kingdom as well as on digital banking channels.
The bank has won multiple local and international awards including the Export Finance Bank of the Year at the 2023 BusinessDay Banks and Other Financial Institutions (BAFI) Awards, the Best Payment Solution Provider Nigeria 2023 and Best SME Bank Nigeria 2022 by the Global Banking and Finance Awards; Best Bank for SMEs in Nigeria by the Euromoney Awards for Excellence 2023; and Best Domestic Private Bank in Nigeria by the Euromoney Global Private Banking Awards 2023.
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FirstBank Partners International Women’s Society to Empower Women

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First Bank of Nigeria Limited has partnered with the International Women’s Society (IWS) to empower over 250 widows, in commemoration of the 2024 International Widows’ Day.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that beneficiaries at the Lagos event, tagged “IWS Widows Feast and Empowerment Programme”, received various essential tools, equipment and grants. The items distributed were sewing machines, freezers, coolers, hair dryers, cake mixers, industrial cooking gas, generators, and freezers to help the widows establish and sustain their businesses.

Ms Lande Atere, Chief Customer Experience Officer, FirstBank, said that the financial institution had been partnering with IWS for over a decade. According to her, the bank has been empowering women-owned Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) with funding and skills acquisition.

“As an organisation that strategically prioritises financial inclusion, we will continue to support IWS in creating entrepreneurial opportunities and promoting self-reliance and vocational skills among women,” Atere stated.

Mrs Adebanke Adeola, Chairperson of the International Women’s Society (IWS) Widows Trust Fund (WTF), appreciated FirstBank for supporting the society in empowering and feasting with the widows. Adeola mentioned that the bank provided Point of Sale (POS) machines to improve the benefiting widows’ access to financial services and income generation opportunities.

Also, some beneficiaries would receive extra working capital through the generosity of the financial institution and other sponsors.

“This partnership, along with generous sponsorships from other companies and individuals, enables us to continue our mission and expand our impact. The programme, organised yearly, aims to help widows achieve financial independence and self-sufficiency,” Adeola said.

Culled from NAN

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Fidelity Bank Leads Trading As Equities Gain N324bn

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Fidelity Bank Plc was the most active stock on Monday, 10 June 2024 at the Nigerian stock market as a strong positive sentiment led Nigerian equities to a net capital gain of N324 billion in the first trading session of the week.
The market opened with widespread positive sentiment as investors sought to lock into value stocks in the high-end sectors of oil and gas, construction and manufacturing.
With three gainers for every loser, the market closed with average return of 0.58 per cent, equivalent to net capital gain of N324 billion.
The momentum of activities also improved considerably as total turnover rose by 148.33 per cent to 963.541 million shares valued at N13.498 billion in 8,657 deals. Fidelity Bank topped the activity chart with 605.257 million shares valued at N6.025 billion.
Fidelity Bank’s activities appeared to be driven by buy sentiment as the stock closed within the top 15 gainers with a gain of 6.52 per cent to close at N9.80 per share.
The All Share Index (ASI)- the common value-based index that tracks all share prices at the Nigerian Exchange (NGX), rose by 0.58 per cent to close at 99,793.71 points as against its opening index of 99,221.14 points.
Aggregate market value of all quoted equities also increased simultaneously from its opening value of N56.128 trillion to close at N56.452 trillion.
Other most active stocks included Access Holdings, which recorded turnover of 93.067 million shares worth N1.744 billion. United Bank for Africa (UBA) traded 58.726 million shares valued at N1.261 billion. Nigerian Breweries traded 45.256 million shares valued at N1.267 billion while Zenith Bank traded 16.079 million shares worth N539.552 million.
Analysts at Futureview Financial Services said they anticipated a mixed sentiment in the equities market, primarily due to the enduring allure of the fixed income market among investors.
“This interest is fueled by expectations of increased rates in the Nigerian Treasury Bill (NTB) auction and the impending release of the inflation rate. However, amidst these factors, there remains an opportunity for sustainable growth, particularly in fundamentally strong stocks that currently find themselves in the oversold region. We foresee a selective pursuit of bargains, particularly in dividend-paying stocks, driven by the nearing corporate qualification and payment,” Futureview stated.
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