COLONNADE Reinsurance Company Limited officially rebranded to Waica Re Zimbabwe after West African reinsurance firm, Waica Reinsurance Corp Plc, completed a $5,5 million takeover.
BY BUSINESS REPORTER
The Sierra Leone-based Waica said the expansion into Zimbabwe was part of the group’s strategy to enter the southern African market.
“I would like to inform all of you that for me, in four months, they (Waica Reinsurance Corp Plc) they did all that was necessary to get into Colonnade Reinsurance Company Limited and become Waica Re Zimbabwe … they heard of Colonnade, came in, did due diligence like the MoU (memorandum of understanding) and agreement of sale, and capital injection,” Waica Re Zimbabwe managing director Julius Nenzou said at the official rebranding of Colonnade on Wednesday evening.
“When I say capital injection, even I was surprised. When they came in they initially said they would do it in tranches. But after signing the sales agreement, in two months, they had put in US$5,5 million into Zimbabwe.”
He said the funds came from all over west Africa, including Lagos (Nigeria) and Accra (Ghana), even some from New York (United States).
In Waica Reinsurance Corp Plc’s annual report for 2017, chairman Kofi Duffuor said they had engaged several Zimbabwean industry stakeholders throughout the course of last year before settling on Colonnade Reinsurance Company (Ltd).
The idea was to set Zimbabwe as an anchor into the rest of the region.
Speaking at the rebranding ceremony, Duffuor said interest in Colonnade had started a few years back.
It was only until March this year that Waica Reinsurance Corp Plc announced its involvement with Colonnade Reinsurance Company Limited.
Besides the new market Zimbabwe, Waica Reinsurance Corp Plc also operates in Ghana, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Tunisia and Kenya.
“We have met fully the new minimum capital requirements by means of liquid funds and not real estate or other non-liquid assets.
This makes us ready to meet our obligations to our clients,” Duffuor said.
“Waica Re is committed to delivering the highest level of professional services to our clients and we are excited at the opportunity to introduce this innovative and client-centric service to the Zimbabwean and southern African market, through enhanced underwriting capacity, technical expertise, risk management capabilities, and technology that will provide long-term benefits to all
In Waica Reinsurance Corp Plc’s annual 2017 report, the company reported shareholders’ funds of $84,1 million, assets worth $119,95 million, a net profit before tax of $7,94 million and gross premiums written of $62,11 million.
However, the company’s return on equity has been on a decline since 2015, registering a 9% at the end of last year.