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NMBZ seeks fresh capital

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NMBZ Holdings shareholders may soon embark on a fresh capital-raising exercise, as the banking group seeks funds to meet new regulatory capital requirements and boost its underwriting capacity.

Report by Bernard Mpofu

The group yesterday issued a cautionary statement indicating negotiations were underway and could impact on the NMBZ share price.

Under Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) listing requirements quoted companies are obliged to issue cautionary statements when they have plans to carry out transactions that could alter the share price.
Should the group finalise on the plans, a circular outlining the blue print would be issued to shareholders.

The group’s statement read in part: “NMBZ Holdings advises its shareholders that the company is engaged in negotiations which, if concluded successfully, will have a significant impact on its operations.

“Shareholders are accordingly advised to exercise caution when dealing in the company’s securities until a further announcement is made.”

NMBZ group chief executive officer James Mushore declined to comment citing ZSE listing requirements which bar companies from disclosing critical information after issuing a cautionary statement.

The proposed recapitalisation is in response to the phased minimum capital requirements thresholds set by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe in August this year. In the first phase commercial banks should have $25 million by December 31.

But the banks are required to inject $100 million by June 2014.
The group said it had accepted offers for the purchase of half of an investment property owned by the bank for a consideration of $2 150 000 and for the purchase of the holding company’s shareholding in an associate for a consideration of $1 589 209.

While it could not be established how the recapitalisation would be carried  out it is understood  the group is exploring various initiatives such as raising money from existing shareholders and disposal of its interests in an associate company.

NMBZ has a 25% stake in African Century Limited, a leasing business it owns together with African Century.

African Century has 30% shareholding in the group. African Century is also tipped to increase its shareholding in the group.

The company moved into NMBZ in 2010 after underwriting the group’s $10 million rights offer.

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