Business News of Sunday, 7 October 2018
Energy Commercial Bank Limited has launched its initial public offer (IPO) to raise GH¢340 million for Ghanaians to own shares in the company.
The IPO, which is offering up to 261 million shares at GH¢1.30 per share, is part of an initiative of the bank to meet the GH¢400 million minimum capital requirement of the Bank of Ghana (BoG) before the December 2018 deadline.
The offer period, which is expected to last for one month, began on October 2 and will end on November 2, 2018, after which allotments will begin to enable the company to list on the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE).
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the bank, Ms Christiana Ekaete Olaoye, said the listing of the company on the stock exchange was also part of an initiative to allow Ghanaians to own a part of the bank.
“The launch of the Energy Commercial Bank’s IPO is a confirmation of our dedication to the people of Ghana and our confidence in the Ghanaian economy as we look forward to a future with hope and optimism.
“We will also use this opportunity to express our profound gratitude to the government, and our valuable customers for their continuous loyalty and tremendous support to the bank,” she said.
She observed that competition in the banking industry was intense to an extent that a bank must demonstrate unique character in order to remain competitive in the market.
“Since we began business in February 2011, we have exhibited prudent operational, audit, and risk management practices in line with BoG’s strict policies,” she said.
The CEO observed that listing on the GSE meant that the bank was moving to another level by improving transparency, enhancing corporate governance practices and also supporting the regulator to promote safety, soundness, and stability of the financial system.
“Becoming a public limited liability company raises investor confidence in the bank and strategically positions it for exciting opportunities and rapid growth.
“Let me applaud the central bank for its swiftness and firmness in dealing with recent challenges in the banking industry,” Ms Olaoye said.
Nigerian owned bank
The acting Board Chairman of the bank, Mr David Adom, said the bank which was currently owned by Nigerian entities had chosen to recapitalise through a public offer to give individual Ghanaians and institutions an opportunity to participate in the future dream of the bank.
Banks urged to list
The Governor of BoG, Dr Ernest Addison, in a speech read on his behalf by the Deputy Head of Banking Supervision of BoG, Mr Elliot Amoako, asked other banks to also take steps to list on the capital market.
He explained that the new capital requirement had become necessary to align banks’ capital base more closely with economic realities, and as a regulator, BoG was looking forward to a strong and a well-capitalised banking sector to support the transformation agenda of the Ghanaian government.
“We, therefore, continue to encourage banks that want to list on the GSE to harness the potential of raising long-term financing to do so,” he added.