ETHIOPIA – Zamzam Bank S.C., one of the Islamic banks under formation in Ethiopia has sold shares with a total value of 623,694,000 birr (US$18.34 million). It will be the first Islamic bank in Ethiopia to start operation.  

According to Ethiopian Herald, through the regulatory body of financial sector of Ethiopia, National bank of Ethiopia, the total number of people and companies who bought over one million birr (US$29,411) share are 294. The 294 subscribers have paid a total of 289,698,000 birr (US$8.52 million).  

The National Bank of Ethiopia has made the announcement on the paper listing the names and share values of the individuals and companies to give an opportunity for the who may have concerns or objections. The value of one share of Zamzam Bank Share Company is 1,000 birr (US$29.4).  

Hansen Trade and Industry PLC, is the largest shareholder subscribing to 30,000 shares valued 30 million birr (US$882,352) followed by Global Insurance Company, which subscribed for 20,000 shares of Zamzam Bank with total value of 20 million birr (US$588,235).  

Abubakar Adil Muktar has also subscribed to 10,200 shares worth 10.2 million birr (US$300,000), followed by Sofia Mohammed Yesuf, who bought shares worth 10.1 million birr (US$297,058).  

Each of the following seven individuals and companies have also bought 10 million birr (US$295,117) worth shares of Zamzam Bank: Ibrahim Oumer Mustafa, Osman Omer Mustefa, Jibril Ibrahim Mohammed, Kadio Group Property and Business Development, Mohammed Hussen Ahmed, Nobel Family PLC, and Nuru Mohammed Yesuf, according to the report.  

After Ethiopia recently allowed for the formation of Islamic banks, several banks are currently raising fund to start interest free banking service. Among those under formation are Hijra, and Zad Bank, among others.  

In addition, other banks such as, Goh Betoch Bank, which aims to finance housing, Amhara Bank,Gadda Bank, Jano, Ahadu, and Kush Bank are also currently under formation to join Ethiopia’s underserved 100 million plus population of Ethiopia.

Currently there are a total of 18 banks in Ethiopia of which the state-owned Commercial Bank of Ethiopia has half of the total market share of the industry.  

The 2019 revised Banking Business Proclamation of Ethiopia, has for the first time allowed foreign nationals of Ethiopian origin to invest in banking sector.