KENYA – Equity Group Holdings PLC has announced the completion of its acquisition of 66.53% stake in the Banque Commerciale Du Congo (BCDC) at a cost of US$95 Million.

Equity Group now has two subsidiaries in the Democratic Republic of Congo having earlier acquired ProCredit, a German bank, now Equity Bank Congo. BCDC is the oldest bank in the country, having been established in 1909.

“We have been fortunate to have had the opportunity to acquire two of the most solid banks in the market,” said Dr.  Mwangi, the Group Managing Director and CEO of Equity Group Holdings Plc.

“With the second and fourth largest banks in the country being our subsidiaries, we are confident that amalgamation and merger of the two subsidiaries will produce a combined bank with a balance sheet in excess of US$2 billion with the capacity and capability to contribute significantly to the development and transformation of the Democratic Republic of Congo.”

Dr. Mwangi said that a merger of the two entities will produce a subsidiary which contribute more than 20% of the Group’s total balance sheet.

The merged entity will firmly be on the path of becoming the largest banking entity in DRC within a period of one year given the leadership, managerial and financial resources of the Group and the business synergies that will go with being a member of regional group.

“We are glad that we now have the size and countrywide infrastructure that can bring our experience and capability to contribute significantly to the transformation of lives and livelihoods in DRC, while stimulating economic transformation of the country through resource allocation,” said Dr. Mwangi. He added,

“The addition of and amalgamation with BCDC will put Equity Group Holdings Plc on the path to become a KSh 1 trillion (US$9.24bn) balance sheet business, that will benefit from economies of scale.”

In September last year, Equity announced it had agreed with the majority shareholder— George Arthur Forrest and family— to acquire all the 625,354 shares (66.53 percent) owned by the Belgian entrepreneur at a cost of US$105 million.

The price of the transaction included dividends declared after January 1, 2019, in respect of the financial year ending December 31, 2019, meaning cum-dividend price per share of US$167.9.

“My decision to sell my shares in BCDC to Equity was because I knew Equity would preserve and develop it to further enhance the lustre it deserves. BCDC has contributed greatly to the creation and development of the DRC and has contributed in writing its history over the last 111 years (one hundred and eleven years),” said George Forrest

“I sell my shares to Equity in the trust that it will make it the largest bank in Congo and continue to contribute to the development and transformation of the country.”

“I express our gratitude to Mr Forrest and his family, the board and management of BCDC for their openness and trust during the period of the transaction. We are grateful for the trust and confidence bestowed on us,” added Dr Mwangi.

Equity Bank, with more than 14 million customers, has operations across the region in Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, South Sudan, and the DRC.

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