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TN Bank delists

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TN Bank will today delist from the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) following a takeover of the financial institution by mobile phone operator Econet Wireless Zimbabwe (EWZ). The bank listed in June 2012.

Report by Bernard Mpofu

According to a notice issued by the bank yesterday, an offer by EWZ to buy out minority shareholders in TN Bank, which closed on January 31 2013, was accepted.

Following this transaction, EWZ now controls 97,96% of the bank, while minority shareholders who did not accept the buyout now hold 2,04% of TN.

Econet had offered a share swap and buyout of TN shareholders in a bid to shore up the bank.

The buyout came after the mobile phone operator had already struck a deal with the then largest individual shareholder and TN founder Tawanda Nyambirai.

Nyambirai agreed to relinquish his stake in exchange for equity in Econet Wireless Global. Under ZSE rules, a quoted company should delist when a single shareholder exceeds the 70% shareholding.

“EWZ has advised TN Bank Limited that it will deal with the shareholders who did not accept the offer in accordance with provisions of the Companies Act,” reads the notice in part.

“TN Bank Limited will be delisted from the ZSE on the 8th of February 2013. The sponsoring broker will continue to accept TN Bank shares on behalf of EWZ on the same terms as the initial offer.”

The company, according to the notice, also changed its financial year end to February 28 from December 28 to align with that of EWZ. The bank will accordingly release its 14 months financial results for the new year end.

Figures released by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe show that TN had partially complied with the revised minimum capital requirements announced last year.

The apex bank raised minimum capital requirements for commercial banks to $100 million from $12,5 million. The staggered recapitalisation exercise is expected to be completed by 2014.

TN Bank capital stood at $26,9 million against the $25 million stipulated by the Reserve Bank for the period ending December 31 2012.

The bank has been critical in driving growth of Econet’s mobile money service, Ecocash, which has grown rapidly since its launch in September 2011.

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