News Column

Mainstreet - Investors Protest Time Frame

May 12, 2014

Kayode Ekundayo, Lagos

A group of prospective investors and shareholders in Mainstreet Bank have protested the time frame provided for submission of expression of interest for the acquisition of the bank. A copy of the protest letter addressed to the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), a copy seen by Daily Trust yesterday, demanded for extension of the deadline, which is due to expire on Friday.

AMCON's financial advisers in the Mainstreet sale last week published a public notice in which they asked interested parties in the acquisition to submit their Expression Of Interest (EOI) not later than May 16.

But the prospective investors said a week's time frame is not sufficient for any meaningful evaluation and due diligence to be done on the bank. They urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Presidency to prevail on AMCON to give more time for interested buyers to prepare.

They said any seeming rush in the transaction would provoke allegations of unfairness.

When Daily Trust contacted AMCON spokesman Kayode Lambo yesterday, he said the EOI advertisement was not placed by the corporation but by its financial advisers in the transaction.

"We are not the ones that placed the advertisement in question. It is our advisers and I will urge the investors and shareholders to direct their enquiries to them for necessary clarification," he said.

AMCON's financial advisers in the Mainstreet divestment are Barclays Africa Group Limited and Afrinvest, Lambo added.

Mainstreet Bank (formerly Afribank), Keystone Bank (formerly Bank PHB) and Enterprise Bank (formerly Spring Bank) were nationalised and acquired from the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) by AMCON on August 5, 2011, following the revocation of their banking licences by the CBN.

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Source: AllAfrica

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