Friday, March 31

Otedola acquires major stake in First bank.

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Business magnate and investor, Mr. Femi Otedola, has acquired a material shareholding in Nigeria’s oldest banking group, FBN Holdings (FBNH) Plc.

Otedola in a series of secondary market transactions and negotiated deals was confirmed to have acquired more than five per cent equity stake in FBN Holdings, the parent holding company for First Bank of Nigeria (FBN) and its former subsidiaries

Nigerian capital market rules set a threshold of five per cent for “material” or significant shareholding, which must be disclosed to the regulatory authorities and the board of the affected company.

Sources in the know and dealers at the stock market confirmed that Otedola might have acquired more than two billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each in FBNH in a series of secondary transactions that heightened with a major cross deal two weeks ago.

FBNH, one of the companies with the widest and diverse shareholding base, has total issued share capital of 35.895 billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each.

In one of the transactions, Otedola was believed to be the proxy buyer in a N7.57 billion cross deal at the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited on October 07, 2021. A total of 473 million shares of FBNH were crossed at N16 per share, significantly above the market price. The transaction was registered as a “negotiated cross deal” by FBNQuest Securities Limited, implying that the deal was already concluded between the parties and was merely taken to the market to formalise the transaction.

A Marina, Lagos-based stockbroking firm also confirmed to The Nation that it sold several millions of shares to Otedola in multiple secondary market transactions, deals that popped up the firm and FBN Holdings as largest dealer and most active stock in recent days.

Some of the deals included shares held by an estranged long-standing director of the group, who lost a major boardroom squabble recently and under regulatory review.

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