The chairman of Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI), Alain Nkontchou, scaled up his holding in the lender by more than twofold in 2022, according to share purchase documents posted on the Nigerian Exchange’s websites.
Mr Nkontchou held a 1.4 per cent stake equivalent to 261.7 million ordinary shares in the pan-African lender as of the end of 2021 but grew that to 602.7 million as of 31 December 2022. Altogether, the ETI chairman acquired 341 million units of common stock last year.
While 16.5 million shares were directly purchased in the name of Mr Nkontchou, the chairman procured 324.4 million indirectly through Enko Opportunity Growth Fund Limited, a fund linked to him and led by Enko Capital Management LLP, an asset management firm in which he is also a co-founder as well as a managing partner.
Executed in multiple transactions, the direct share acquisitions cost N211.4 million in all; the indirect purchases were valued at N3.836 billion, both summing up to N4.1 billion.
Mr Nkontchou acquired over 4.7 million shares (at N12.50 per unit) worth N59.4 on 5 May 2022, and roughly 11.8 million shares (at N12.90 per unit) estimated at N152.1 million on 6 May 2022, regulatory filings show.
Enko Opportunity Growth Fund Limited purchased over 322 million shares (at an average price of N11.83 per unit) valued at N3.8 billion on 30 and 31 March as well as 24 May 2022. The fund bought further 792,218 shares (at N11.03 per unit) worth N8.7 million on 22 August and 13 September 2022.
Between 20 and 22 September, it acquired additional 524,418 shares (at N11.2 per unit) totalling N5.9 million. Enko bought over 1.1 million shares (at N11.6 each) worth N12.8 million between 27 and 30 September 2022.
Mr Nkontchou was formerly the managing director of Global Macro Trading at Proprietary Trading Group of Credit Suisse in London, which he joined from JP Morgan in 2005. He was managing director at JP Morgan from 2002 to 2005.
Between 2001 and 2002, he served as a portfolio manager at Blue Crest Capital Management.
Mr Nkontchou, a Cameroonian, joined ETI’s board of directors in 2014, becoming the chairman six months later. ETI’s largest shareholders are Qatar National Bank (27.1 per cent) and Nedbank (21.2 per cent).
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ETI was formed in 1985 as a commercial bank and is headquartered in Lome, Togo. The lender has footprints in 35 countries on the continent, offering retail, wholesale and investment banking services to financial institutions, governments, SMEs, multinationals and individuals.
The group’s shares are listed on the BRVM stock exchange, the Ghana Stock Exchange and the Nigerian Exchange.
Its Nigerian operation, Ecobank Nigeria, was incorporated as a public limited liability company in October 1986. Ecobank Nigeria currently has 250 branches and more than 50,000 agency banking points.
It became a top-tier bank in the country in terms of deposits, customer base, branches as well as assets after the acquisition of Oceanic Bank in October 2011.
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