Saturday, April 19, 2014

Zenith Bank joins 96 sub-Saharan firms listed on London Stock Exchange

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The listing gives Zenith access to the deepest international pool of capital in the world.

Zenith Bank Nigeria Plc, one of Nigeria’s largest commercial banks, was on Thursday announced as the latest publicly quoted company from Nigeria to list its shares on the London Stock Exchange.

“London Stock Exchange welcomes today Zenith Bank, one of Nigeria’s largest banks, to its Main Market,” the stock exchange said in a statement.

“The company is listing Global Depository Receipts, GDRs, in London, giving the bank access to a wide range of major institutional investors and significantly raising its international profile. The company’s market capitalisation at listing was $4.24 billion,” the statement added.

The listing also gives Zenith access to the deepest international pool of capital in the world, currently holding more than $1.8 trillion in international equity assets.

Zenith Bank is admitting 125 million GDRs, which would trade on London Stock Exchange’s International Order Book, the world’s largest and most liquid GDR market. Each Zenith Bank GDR represents 50 ordinary shares.

Zenith’s listing means that the largest Nigerian bank by tier-1 capital is now listed in London, joining a vibrant community of 58 emerging market banks listed in London, valued collectively at just under $75 billion.

It joins five other companies on London Stock Exchange’s markets that have major operations in Nigeria, and 97 Sub-Sahara African focused companies listed on or admitted to London Stock Exchange Markets.

They are made up of 23 equity listings on Main Market, two GDR listings on Main Market, 70 equity admissions on AIM and two GDR listings on PSM.

London Stock Exchange is the largest international stock exchange for African companies.

Since 2008, Africa-focused companies listed on London Stock Exchange have raised over £4.2 billion in new and further issues.

“Zenith Bank’s listing highlights London’s leading role in supporting Nigeria’s burgeoning financial sector. Three major Nigerian banks have listed in London demonstrating UK and international investors’ appetite for exposure to this fast growing and increasingly diverse economy,” the Head of Primary Markets, Africa, at London Stock Exchange, Ibukun Adebayo, said.

Zenith Bank, whose operational headquarters is in Lagos, has subsidiaries in the U.K., Ghana, Sierra Leone, The Gambia and representative offices in South Africa and China.

With a customer base of over two million accounts spread across 366 branches and total assets of $27 billion, it is one of the leading Nigerian banks on virtually all parameters.”

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