Nigerian lender Access Bank has agreed to purchase a 78.15% stake in African Banking Corporation of Botswana (BancABC Botswana).

The seller is ABC Holdings, which is a subsidiary of Atlas Mara.

The transaction involves a cash consideration, representing around 1.13 times book value. It includes a deferred portion payable two years after deal closing.

The deal is said to “further solidify” Access Bank’s retail and corporate banking services and facilitate trade and payments across southern Africa.

Access Bank GMD/CEO Herbert Wigwe said: “The establishment of Access Bank through this acquisition in the Republic of Botswana will position the bank to deliver a more complete set of banking solutions to its clients active in and across the SADC and COMESA regions.

“This transaction complements our recent strategic growth acquisitions in South Africa, Zambia and Mozambique. We are building a bank of the future that Africans across Africa and the world would be proud of and look forward to welcoming the employees, customers and other stakeholders of BancABC Bostawana to Access Bank.”

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By GlobalData

The deal awaits regulatory nod, with completion scheduled in the second quarter of 2021.

Atlas Mara chairman Michael Wilkerson said that the deal aligns with its previously-announced strategic review and overall debt restructuring.

Wilkerson stated: “The pandemic-related economic slowdown in 2020 led to a broadening of the initially-announced strategic review and an acceleration of potential transaction discussions in-line with the Company’s objective of a comprehensive restructuring of the Company’s and ABCH’s balance sheets.

“This Transaction, like the previously announced transactions for Mozambique, Rwanda and Tanzania, is consistent with this strategy and will help realize value for the Group’s creditors and other stakeholders.”

Last month, Access Bank received key regulatory approvals for the proposed acquisition of South Africa-based Grobank.

Grobank provides business banking, agribusiness and forex services among others.