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I&M COMPLETES ACQUISITION OF ORIENT BANK

By Khasacha Mwene

I&M Holdings PLC on Monday May 3, 2021 announced the majority acquisition of Orient Bank Limited (OBL) from 8 miles LLP and Morka Holdings Limited. OBL is the 12th largest commercial bank licensed and established in Uganda. I&M Holdings PLC and Orient Bank Limited signed an agreement in July 2020 for I&M Holdings PLC to acquire 90 percent shareholding of Orient Bank.

The acquisition was completed on April 30, 2021 after receiving the necessary approvals from the Central Bank of Kenya, Bank of Uganda, Capital Markets Authority of Kenya and the COMESA Competition Authority. The move underscores I&M Group’s commitment to its growth and expansion strategy in East Africa, where Uganda was the missing link in the Group’s strategic effort to set up its presence in all East African countries.
A key focus of this strategy is to seek opportunities to invest at a local and regional level enabling the Bank to serve the needs of all customers, while promoting trade flows within the region.

The Group has made noteworthy investments in its robust infrastructure as part of its digital transformation journey. Through this acquisition, OBL customers will now benefit from this technologically driven infrastructure, which will give them a wide suite of market driven financial solutions, aimed at meeting their financial and lifestyle requirements.

In addition, this acquisition provides Orient Bank customers an added convenience of accessing their bank accounts across the five countries where I&M has presence.

 

This development supports the Group’s Business Growth initiatives through diversification of revenue streams, by entry into new markets and extension of its Corporate, Business and Personal Banking, Treasury and Trade Finance solutions, to all its customers operating in Uganda.

Commenting on the acquisition, I&M Holding’s Executive Director, Mr. Sarit Raja Shah noted, “I&M Group aspires to be Eastern Africa’s leading financial partner for growth. The acquisition of OBL will place I&M Bank in an advantageous position to capitalize on the growth in the Eastern African economies and thereby ultimately increasing shareholder value.”

Mr. Shah added: “This acquisition is expected to give the Group greater capacity to grow profitably, through extending our network to our Regional customers. Further it demonstrates our continued leadership role in the industry across East Africa.”

Dr. Ketan Morjaria, a founding member of OBL and continuing shareholder and Director said, “This acquisition marks a great milestone in the history of Orient Bank. We are proud to be integrating into a regional group like I&M Holdings PLC, which synergies will allow our customers to benefit from more seamless and superior banking products whilst continuing a tradition of trust.”

Kumaran Pather, CEO of OBL said, “The acquisition of OBL by I&M Holdings PLC, will see the new entity rise to greater heights and allow us to broaden our market reach and penetration. The management of OBL is excited to be part of a large and growing Group and look forward to serving both new and existing customers with better products and digital channels across the region.”

Through the acquisition, I&M Group has acquired additional net loan assets of approximately Shs262bn value, deposits of Shs606bn, a customer base of 68787, a staff component of 340 employees and a network of 14 branches and 22 ATMs across the country. A clear plan for the integration of OBL into the I&M Group has been developed and the Group expects to gain considerable business and operational synergies.

The acquisition of OBL adds to a list of previous strategic alliances that the I&M Group has effectively completed such as the acquisition of Giro Commercial Bank Limited in Kenya, I&M Burbidge Capital Limited in Kenya and Uganda, CF Union Bank in Tanzania, BCR Bank in Rwanda and First City Bank in Mauritius.

I&M Group aspires to become East Africa’s leading financial growth partner and the partnership with Orient Bank Limited is very timely since the Group plans to play a significant role in the growth of the banking sector in Uganda, as it has done in other East African markets. (For comments on this story, call, text or whatsapp us on 0705579994, 0779411734, 0200900416 or email us at mulengera2040@gmail.com).

 

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