Nigeria’s Union Bank raises $163 mln via share sale to boost buffers

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LAGOS, Jan 8 – Nigeria’s Union Bank has raised 49.7 billion naira ($163 mln)through a rights issued which it said was 120 percent subscribed.

The mid-sized lender launched the share sale last September at a ratio of five new shares for every seven held at 4.10 naira each.

Union Bank, set up 100-years ago, had said it planned to spend 80 percent of the funds to enhance its regulatory capital and boost working capital.

“Having successfully raised the required capital, we will accelerate the pace of doing business in 2018 as we begin to deploy this fresh capital across identified business areas,” Chief Executive Officer Emeka Emuwa said in a statement.

The bank, in which Atlas Mara Ltd, the African investment vehicle of former Barclays boss Bob Diamond, owns a 22.1 percent stake, planned to raise funds to also tap opportunities lending to agribusinesses.

Union Bank was a former unit of Barclays Bank.

Shares in Union Bank, which have gained 42 percent last year, closed flat at 7.45 naira each on Monday. ($1 = 305.40 naira)

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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