FCMB shareholders okay holding company structure

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By PETER EGWUATU

Shareholders of First City Monument Bank (FCMB), Wednesday, approved the scheme of arrangement for the restructuring of the bank under a financial service Holding Company (Holdco).

Speaking at the Extra Ordinary General Meeting (EGM) in Lagos on Monday, Chairman, FCMB, Jonathan Long, said the decision to form a holding company was in line with Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)’s directive to banks in September to separate the non-banking subsidiaries from commercial bank, stating that the bank decided to re-organize via scheme of arrangement, the non banking businesses within a holding company arrangement that would deliver and unlock value to the shareholders.

He explained that the new arrangement will see the migration of shareholders of FCMB to become shareholders of the Holdco, via a share for share exchange; sale of other disposable subsidiaries and transfer of permissible non-banking subsidiaries and investments from the bank to the Holdco.

He further told shareholders that the decision to restructure the bank was in line with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)’s directive on regulation 3.

According to him, “ After a detailed deliberations, supported by professional advice from its consultants, the Bank decided to reorganize , via a scheme of arrangement , the non banking businesses within a holding company arrangement that will deliver /unlock value for its numerous shareholders. This is to ensure that the bank’s competitive advantage and sustained financial viability, in line with its medium term strategy.”

Also speaking, the Group Managing Director, FCMB, Ladi Balogun, said the arrangement was done in such a way that it would benefit the shareholders, stating that they should continue to support the bank in its efforts to deliver high returns.

He explained that under the Holdco arrangement, the shareholders would also have the opportunity to comment on how the bank is run, noting that the Management would brief the shareholders quarterly.

In his comments, the Coordinator, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Sir Sunny Nwosu, said the shareholders support the decision taken by the Board, stressing that they would continue to support initiatives targeted at improving the bank.

On his part, the Chairman, Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria (PSAN), Boniface Okezie, said the shareholders are impressed with the arrangement, stressing that unlike other banks that have transformed to HoldCo, the arrangement of the Board favours the shareholders.

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