FBC Holdings has acquired 100% shareholding of the Zimbabwean unit of Standard Chartered Bank subject to regulatory authorities’ approval.
Standard Chartered becomes the second commercial bank to leave the southern African country in six years after Barclays sold its local assets in 2017.
Barclays assets were taken over by Malawi-based FMB Capital, and it rebranded to First Capital Bank.
The announcement was made yesterday at the Standard Chartered Bank head office in Harare by Sunil Kaushal, regional chief executive officer Africa and the Middle East (AME) Standard Chartered PLC and FBC’s chief executive John Mushayavanhu.
Under the agreement, FBC will acquire 100% of the shareholding of Standard Chartered Bank (Zimbabwe) Limited and by extension, the custodial services business that is wholly owned by the bank.
As part of the agreement, FBCH will also acquire the economic interest in Africa Enterprise Network Trust whose main asset is a 20,7% shareholding in Mashonaland Holdings. FBC will inherit all Standard Chartered Bank Zimbabwe employees. The two banks will work closely in the coming months for a seamless transition for its clients and staff.
“The agreement with FBC for the sale of Standard Chartered’s business in Zimbabwe is in line with the bank’s global strategy, aimed at achieving operational efficiency, reducing complexity and driving scale,” Kaushal said in statement.
“This strategic decision allows us to redirect resources within the AME region to areas with significant growth potential, ultimately enabling us to better support our clients.”
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According to Mushayavanhu, the acquisition enables FBC to consolidate its banking market share, customer base and market competitiveness in a rapidly changing banking landscape.
“We are pleased to sign this agreement today and to have been selected by Standard Chartered Bank as the preferred buyer,” he said.
He said Standard Chartered Bank was a leading regional and international bank with more than 150 years of experience globally. The bank has been in Zimbabwe for more than 130 years.
Equally, FBCH is a leading financial services group in Zimbabwe and the region, with interests in commercial banking, insurance, re-insurance, micro-finance, stock-broking and mortgage finance.
“The combined strengths of the two institutions will enable us to better respond to the ever-changing requirements of our clients,” he said.
“Standard Chartered Bank’s clients can expect the continued provision of seamless trade finance and cross-border payments by FBC. We welcome Standard Chartered’s employees to the FBCH group. Both clients and employees alike will benefit greatly from their association with a leading financial institution such as FBC.
“Ultimately, the acquisition will further enhance shareholder value. Signing this agreement today is a testimony to the FBC group’s strong financial position and further enhances its presence on the market.
“We, thus, look forward to working closely with Standard Chartered Bank over the coming few months, towards achieving a smooth transition and successful completion of the transaction. We are now in the process of securing the necessary regulatory approvals from all the requisite regulators”.
In April 2022, Standard Chartered strategically decided to divest from a number of markets, namely Lebanon, Angola, Cameroon, Gambia, Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe and Jordan, and to exit the consumer private and business banking business in Côte d’Ivoire and Tanzania. The bank announced the sale of its business in Jordan in March this year.
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