Access Holdings seals deal to buy Standard Chartered Bank subsidiaries in four African countries


The move signals Access Holdings’ most aggressive push for expansion beyond its home market Nigeria, ever since it teed off operation in Nigeria in 1989 as Access Bank.

Access Holdings has entered into various pacts with Standard Chartered Bank (StanChart) to acquire the British Bank’s subsidiaries in four African markets, Nigeria’s biggest lender announced Friday.

The move signals Access Holdings’ most aggressive push for expansion beyond its home market Nigeria since it commenced operation in Nigeria in 1989 as Access Bank.

StanChart’s banking operations in Angola, Cameroon, The Gambia, and Sierra Leone are up for grabs by Access Holdings, according to a statement seen by PREMIUM TIMES.

The financial services group’s takeover of African Banking Corporation (Tanzania) Limited (BancABC Tanzania) is also in the bag, with a definitive agreement on the deal already in place.

Part of the deals incorporated Access Bank’s purchase of StanChart’s Consumer, Private & Business Banking units in Tanzania.

Access Holdings is progressing in its drive to enter 26 markets by 2027, compared to the 17 countries it operated in as of January 2023.

It expects its customer base to have climbed to 100 million from its current 52 million, surpassing the population of 85 percent (50) of African countries.

The lender only on Thursday completed the acquisition of Angola’s Finibanco S.A. Bank.

“For Access Bank, these transactions represent a key step in our journey to build a strong global franchise focused on serving as a gateway for payments, investment, and trade within Africa and between Africa and the rest of the world as we continue to deliver on our vision to be the World’s Most Respected African Bank,” said Access Bank CEO Roosevelt Ogbonna.
Access Bank is the commercial banking division of Access Holdings. All the deals are to be delivered in the next 12 months.

While Tanzania’s banking regulator has greenlighted the deal involving the buyout of BancABC Tanzania, Access Holdings is looking to the Central Bank of Nigeria to approve the transactions.

Last year, StanChart announced its intention to exit seven countries in Africa and the Middle East, where it considers its operations to be sub-scale and focus on markets of greater potential.

The multinational lender marked Angola, Cameroon, Gambia, Jordan, Lebanon, Sierra Leone, and Zimbabwe as markets where it planned to divest its stakes.

That is a paradigm shift for StanChart, which has come to be known as one of the biggest European banking investors in Africa.

“Access Bank will provide a full range of banking services and continuity for key stakeholders, including employees and clients of Standard Chartered’s businesses across the five aforementioned countries,” StanChart said in a statement.


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