African Alliance Securities Limited chief executive officer Armstrong Kamphoni has said the recent undertakings at Malawi Stock Exchange (MSE)-listed FMB are an indication of the growing sophistication of the country’s banking sector.
African Alliance made the observation in the wake of FMB’s acquisition of majority shareholding in Barclays Bank of Zimbabwe in June, which is subject to fulfilling statutory, regulatory and other approvals.
At the end of June, the bank also announced that it is fully taking over struggling Opportunity Bank of Malawi (OBM), having reached an agreement in relation to the acquisition pending approval of Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM).
FMB is also in the process of restructuring the company which will see FMB transferring all shares to FMB Capital Holdings Plc (FMBCH), a company incorporated in Mauritius.
As a result of this, an application will be made to MSE to list the shares of FMBCH and delist the shares of FMB.
Kamphoni said the prospects of dual-listing could prove to be a valuable dollar hedge.
He said: “After the completion of their Zimbabwe acquisition, they will have presence in five neighbouring southern African countries. In this regard, FMB Group can be considered the largest financial business from Malawi that has become a regional player.”