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Afribank offer: Investors in last-minute rush...As offer closes tomorrow

Posted by By PATRICK ASONYE on 2007/12/09 | Views: 796 |

Afribank offer: Investors in last-minute rush...As offer closes tomorrow


Ahead of the scheduled closure of Afribank public offer tomorrow, SundayBiz checks at the close of business Friday revealed that prospective investors were in a last-minute scramble for their share in the N100 billion offering.

Ahead of the scheduled closure of Afribank public offer tomorrow, SundayBiz checks at the close of business Friday revealed that prospective investors were in a last-minute scramble for their share in the N100 billion offering.

High net worth, medium and small investors besieged the offices of their stockbrokers, portfolio managers, investment analysts and other receiving agents for the Offer to make last minute purchases.

The Public Offer is selling for N25.00 per share, which is a about 20% discount from the pegged price of N30.49 on the Nigerian Stock Exchange.
Afribank has since 10th November 2007 being presenting its huge potentials and strong fundamentals which make its Public Offer a sound investment decision. Market and investment analysts have variously rated Afribank Public Offer high and recommended it to the investing public stressing that its growth potentials and rewarding prospects are very huge.
Prominent industrialists, institutional investors and shareholders Associations have also endorsed the Public Offer and encouraged their members to strengthen their position on the Bank by increasing their stake.

Some of the investment information which makes Afribank Public Offer highly recommending include the ability of the Bank to sustain its present growth rate which has placed it among the fastest growing banks in Nigeria today.
The Bank has also started to demonstrate capacity to perform well above its Public Offer financial forecast as contained in the Offer Prospectus in which, among others, it projected a N12.07billion Profit Before Tax (PBT) for the 2008 Financial Year.

The Bank had recently declared N8.10billion PBT as half-year result as against N2.83billion in the corresponding period in 2006 and this has placed on the fast lane to beat Public Offer projections.
Market analysts believed that if Afribank could sustain its growth rate, it would record at least N16 billion PBT by the end of its current financial year, 31st March 2007. This is over 33% above the projected forecast of N12.07 billion. They also hold the view that going by the friendly reward system of the Bank, shareholders should be expecting above Offer projections returns on their investment.

The analysts also praised Afribank’s strategy on the allocation of Offer proceeds which they believed would enhance its market competitiveness and boost its performance outlook. The Offer expected net proceeds of N94,121,755,000.00 would be allocated thus: working capital 49%, branch network expansion 27%, ICT upgrade 10%, strategic business roll out 8% and increase in equity in subsidiaries 6%.

Markets analysts believed that the Offer proceeds would adequately fund various strategic initiatives of the Bank which are designed to support its growth objectives within and outside Nigeria.
Engineer Ashim Oyekan, Director and Chairman of the recapitalization Committee of the Bank, assured that the Bank would grow organically from the allocations of the Offer proceeds because “the allocations covered practically all aspects of our business operations and they are in line with the five-year strategic growth plan of Bank which is already delivering results”.

Afribank has planned to strengthen its operations with more business locations in addition to the present 250 branches, expand offshore operations, offer more e-business services and recapitalize subsidiaries with a view to making them leaders in their respective industries.
The Board and Management of Afribank have attributed the organic growth of the Bank to solid structure and operational models that are strong enough to optimize the opportunities, open up more businesses avenue and enhance its ability to deliver on promises.

Afribank has continued to leverage on its good brand recognition, stable board and sound management, diversification, spread, pioneering status, information technology, large and loyal clientele, wide products to sharpen its competitive edge.

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