Kenya’s KCB bank acquires Rwandese bank

Customers wait to be served in the banking hall at KCB in Nairobi, Kenya, July 10, 2018. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya/File Photo
Customers wait to be served in the banking hall at KCB in Nairobi, Kenya, July 10, 2018. (REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya)

Kenyan regional bank, KCB Group, has completed the acquisition of Banque Populaire du Rwanda (BPR) from Atlas Mara Mauritius and Arise.

Joshua Oigara, CEO of KCB, said the purchase follows the securing of the requisite regulatory approvals in Kenya, and Rwanda making the lender the majority shareholder in BPR, Rwanda’s second-biggest bank, with effect from Wednesday.

“The combined history of BPR and KCB will take the group to greater heights, giving us a stronger edge to play a bigger role in driving the financial inclusion and economic empowerment agenda in the East African region,” Oigara said in a statement issued in Nairobi.

KCB has subsidiaries in Tanzania, South Sudan, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi as well as a representative office in Ethiopia.

Oigara observed that the completion of the transaction in Rwanda will give the Kenyan financial institution a stronger edge in deepening the ongoing group strategy to scale regional presence.

“This will increase our scale and improve our operating leverage by enabling us to deliver our existing retail and wholesale offerings to a wider base of customers in Rwanda while positioning the bank for sustainable growth in the long-term,” Oigara added.

He revealed that with the purchase, the plan is to eventually create one banking entity in Rwanda by merging KCB Bank Rwanda and BPR.

Oigara added that KCB bank also intends to acquire 100 percent shareholding of African Banking Corporation Tanzania (BancABC) from ABC Holdings (96.6 percent) and Tanzania Development Finance Company (3.4 percent).

He said that the proposed acquisition is pending regulatory approval.