Finally, AMCON Sells Keystone Bank for N25bn to New Investors

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• Former Sigma Pensions CEO, Modibbo, part of consortium

Obinna Chima

The Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) on Monday announced Sigma Golf Nigeria Limited and Riverbank Investment Resources Limited (the Sigma Golf-Riverbank consortium) as the new investors that have acquired the entire issued and fully paid up ordinary shares of Keystone Bank Limited, formerly BankPHB Plc.

This followed the receipt of the necessary regulatory approvals from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

AMCON in a statement on Monday explained that the completion of the transaction was subject to the fulfilment of the conditions precedent as stated in the Share Sale and Purchase Agreement (SPA) executed between AMCON and the Sigma Golf-Riverbank consortium.

But it did not state what the winning bid was for Keystone Bank, neither did the statement from AMCON clarify if there was a reserve bidder in the event the Sigma Golf-Riverbank consortium fails to meet the payment terms for the acquisition of Keystone Bank.
However, THISDAY gathered that the bank, which was valued at almost N4 billion, was sold to the Sigma Golf-Riverbank consortium for N25 billion ($81.5 million), while the reserve bidder offered N13 billion ($42.4 million) for Keystone Bank.

It explained that the Sigma Golf-Riverbank consortium comprises Sigma Golf Nigeria Limited and Riverbank Investment Resources, both of which are entities set up by local investors.
Further investigations by THISDAY revealed that one of the financiers of the consortium is the former Managing Director/CEO of Sigma Pensions Limited, Mr. Umar Hamidu Modibbo.
Modibbo and his brother, Adamu Mu’azu Modibbo, a former governorship aspirant in Adamawa State, were the founders of Sigma Pensions, a pension fund administrator (PFA), until its sale to Actis LLP, a private equity investor in emerging markets, in November 2015.

“This process started with interest shown by 18 parties cutting across local and international investors. The emergence of the Sigma Golf-Riverbank consortium resulted from a rigorous and competitive bidding process, which was coordinated for AMCON by Citibank Nigeria Limited and its affiliates and FBN Capital (Joint Financial Advisers), and Banwo & Ighodalo and Crosswrock Law (Joint Legal Advisers),” AMCON added.
AMCON in February last year invited prospective investors to express interest in the acquisition of Keystone Bank.

The corporation had in a publication explained that in furtherance of its strategic objectives, it had decided to divest of its shareholding in Keystone Bank.
Based on the audited financial statement of the bank as of June 30, 2015, Keystone Bank’s total assets stood at N317.6 billion, customer loans at N98.2 billion, customer deposits at N245 billion and total equity at N18.9 billion.

As of December 2015, Keystone Bank had four operational subsidiaries of which two are international; and a distribution network comprising 156 branches, 22 cash centres and 306 ATMs.
Keystone Bank is the last of the three banks that were purchased by AMCON through a bridging process during the banking crisis of 2009.
The other two banks formerly owned by the corporation – Mainstreet Bank and Enterprise Bank – have since been sold to core investors.

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  • Chibueze Ogbu

    Thanks for this informative piece laced with your investigative inputs. Do please keep up with value adding investigative journalism. Do not condescend to just reporting as is and ‘as I was told’ replete in many other Newspapers/ media

    • Naija United

      Hurray Arewa republic of Nigeria, the Mallams are taking over everywhere

  • prince

    This deal was not transparent enough.