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NSE approves Afribankââââ‚


September 07, 2007/ Punch



The Nigerian Stock Exchange has approved the proposed public offers of Afribank Nigeria Plc and First City Monument Bank Plc.


Afribank intends to raise about N100bn from the market by issuing four billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each at N25 per share, while FCMB is seeking to raise N44bn by issuing about 3.163billion shares at N14 per share.


Our correspondent learnt that the NSE’s approval was given after its Quotation Committee meeting on Wednesday.


With the approvals, both banks would now go ahead with preparations to float the shares to the investing public.


United Bank for Africa Plc, Oceanic Bank International Plc and First Bank of Nigeria Plc had earlier accessed the market this year to raise over N200bn.


Access Bank is currently in the market shopping for funds, while Fidelity Bank Plc recently got NSE’s approval to raise funds from the market.


Our correspondent found that the recently released impressive result of Afribank for the year ended March 31, 2007, is already attracting investors to the proposed offer.


Meanwhile, the Chairman, Afribank, Alhaji Aliyu Kola Belgore, on Thursday, assured shareholders of the bank that it would sustain the impressive performance recorded for the year ended March 31, 2007.


Belgore, who gave the assurance at the Annual General Meeting of the bank held in

Enugu, said that Afribank would operate within its new business vision adopted as a five-year strategic transformation anchor capable of taking the bank to greater heights.


According to him, the bank recorded a profit before exceptional item and taxation of N9.32bn, an increase of 129 per cent above the N3.98bn recorded in 2006.


Given the impressive results, the board recommended dividend of 30kobo per share and a bonus share of one new share for every five shares held.


The elated shareholders commended the board, management and staff and approved all the proposals at the AGM, including the payment of dividend and bonus issue.


Meanwhile, Afribank further raised investors’ hopes with a profit before tax of N4bn for the first quarter ended June 30, 2007, up from N2bn in the corresponding period of 2006.


On the other hand, FCMB recorded a growth of 109 per cent in profit after tax for the year ended April 30, 2007, rising from N2.833bn in 2006 to N5.948bn.


Its total balance sheet rose by 148 per cent from N106.673bn to N262.841bn. FCMB proposed a dividend of N3.3bn, which translates into 35kobo per share.

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