- The Director of Highways (South-West) at the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, Emmanuel Adeoye says the first section of the Apapa-Wharf Road will be opened to the public by the middle of March. During an inspection tour of the project, Adeoye added that the FG was committed to the successful completion of the project being jointly financed by Dangote Industries and Flour Mills of Nigeria. He said despite the challenges being faced, the construction would be completed in June. Adeoye said, “As we have been briefed, the initial completion date set for the project can still be met. The project is about 60 to 70 per cent completed and is divided into four sections. The first section is expected to be opened before mid-March.
- Africa is the world’s No. 2 banking market in terms of growth and profitability, according to a McKinsey study. Low banking penetration and income levels, as well as economies that are largely cash-based and viewed as a high credit risk, have long been considered major obstacles to the development of the continent’s banking sector. But the McKinsey report — drawing on performance data from 35 of Africa’s leading banks and surveys of banking executives and customers — said the number of banked Africans grew from 170 million in 2012 to nearly 300 million last year. That figure is expected to rise to 450 million in the next five years, with banking revenue rising to $129 billion from about $86 billion now. Only five countries — South Africa, Nigeria, Egypt, Angola and Morocco — currently account for 68 percent of Africa’s total banking revenue and about 60 percent of the total retail revenue growth of nearly $18 billion expected over the next five years will be concentrated in South Africa, Egypt, Nigeria, Morocco and Ghana.
- MTN plans to list its Nigerian unit worth $5.23 billion by July in a debut IPO on the Lagos bourse and will raise fresh funds to reduce debt, according to pre-IPO presentation seen by Reuters. MTN aims to raise at least $400 million from the IPO to pay preference shareholders and is preparing to file an application to the SEC to launch the offer after getting approvals from existing investors last week, the news agency quotes sources with knowledge of the matter said. Nigeria’s biggest telecoms operator plans to go on roadshow between May and June 2018, according to the presentation and list on Nigeria’s bourse between June and July. It will now need to appoint professional parties to the offer. MTN Nigeria has around 402 million shares in issue, the same amount in preference shares, which it sold at $0.99 in 2007. As part of the IPO it would split one share into 50 units, to create 20 billion shares, which would be listed on the NSE and set the IPO price via book building. MTN declined to comment on the IPO. MTN shares are currently traded over-the-counter in Nigeria at $13, giving it a market value of $5.23 billion, down from $25 billion in 2015 before a Nigerian government fine, sources said.
- UBA and the China Development Bank have signed a $100 million seven-year loan agreement to finance the development of small and medium enterprises in Africa. The $100 million loan will improve UBA’s capacity to provide access to finance to small and medium enterprises across the 19 African countries where it currently operates. “We are excited to partner with China Development Bank, the development financial institution of the Chinese government, on this historic transaction, as we strongly believe that the facility will serve as a catalyst to the sustainable development of commerce and industry in Africa through provision of critical financial interventions to SMEs across our presence countries,” UBA’s group managing director, Kennedy Uzoka said. Uzoka said the line of credit is timely, as it should complement the recovery of economic activities. It will also further encourage African entrepreneurship particularly as the funds will be applied to SMEs, which are important for inclusive growth on the continent.
- The chief executive of Barclays Africa said on Thursday the lender aims to enter Nigeria as a new market as it seeks to raise its share of the African banking market to 12 percent from 6 percent over the medium term. Maria Ramos made the remarks during a presentation after South Africa’s No.2 lender by market value reported a 4 percent rise in annual profit thanks to a substantial decline in impairments.