Govt to offload 49% POSB stake

Government to offload 49% POSB stake

GOVERNMENT has put a 29% stake in the People’s Own Savings Bank (POSB) for sale as the bank’s partial privatisation exercise gets underway.

The private placement will be followed by an initial public offering of up to 20% shareholding of the bank to diversify its shareholder base and improve liquidity of the shares, POSB said.

Due to technical insolvency caused by widespread corruption, bad governance, and abuse of public finances, 107 State institutions, including POSB, had been earmarked for partial or full privatisation.

Government’s desire to engage a strategic partner for the bank comes more than two years after POSB contracted KPMG Advisory Services (Zimbabwe) to provide transaction advisory services.

In a statement on Friday, POSB invited potential investors to engage the bank for its 29% shareholding.

“The government of Zimbabwe (“GoZ”) intends to engage a strategic investor in a partial privatisation of the People’s Own Savings Bank, a savings bank licensed and supervised by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe by offering up to 29% of available shareholding through the private placement of the bank’s equity share capital,” POSB said.

“Accordingly, the government of Zimbabwe will hold 51% equity stake past the partial privatisation as provided in the People’s Own Savings Back Act.”

Investors must submit expression of interests by close of business on October 13.

In the bank’s 2022 annual report released in May, POSB acting board chairperson Israel Ndlovu said the partial privatisation project would have been concluded by the end of the year.

“The People’s Own Savings Bank will strengthen its position on the market by growing its customer base and introducing new products. The bank will also continue to be aggressive in deposit mobilisation in order to grow its business and remain competitive,” he said, in an outlook for the bank.

“In an effort to bring convenience and provide efficient services to its customers, the bank will use its wide service centre network, digital channels and agencies to ensure delivery of quality services to its customers.”

As of the end of 2022, the bank had assets worth ZWL$39,37 billion, up 35,46% from the 2021 comparative of ZWL$29,06 billion.

The bank reported that deposits increased by 33% to ZWL$21,29 billion as at December 2022 from ZWL$15,98 billion in 2021.

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