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KCB Bank gets nod to acquire DRC bank

This becomes the second country to enter the mineral rich-nation

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Regional lender, KCB Group PLC has received a no objection to acquire Trust Merchant Bank SA (TMB) in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

KCB Group obtained the regulatory green light in Kenya, the Democratic Republic of Congo and COMESA Competition Commission, setting the stage for the Group to acquire the 85% of the shares in TMB.

KCB Group, which already has operations in Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Uganda and South Sudan, now becomes the second country to Kenyan bank to enter DRC following Equity Bank.

Equity Bank entered the DRC market in 2015 with the acquisition of ProCredit Bank Congo, and in 2019 it acquired a controlling stake in Banque Commerciale du Congo strengthening its footprint in the mineral rich nation

KCB Group CEO Paul Russo said the transaction will positively contribute towards KCB’s increased scale of operations by establishing its presence in new markets and providing income diversification from a geographical perspective.

The transaction will also enable KCB to accelerate its market presence in the DRC in the near term by leveraging on TMB’s 18-year operational history, vast branch network, valuable local customer relationships and deep knowledge of local business dynamics.

In addition to the core banking business of TMB, the existence of an insurance subsidiary Afrissur SA will provide opportunity for KCB to diversify its offerings in DRC’s insurance sector. This Transaction will provide KCB a strategic foundation to capitalize on cross-border trade from the Indian to the Atlantic Oceans.

Through KCB’s expertise and experience, this presents a good opportunity for KCB to provide to the existing customers of TMB and new customers to be acquired as a result of the transaction, enhanced banking products that is expected to grow and embed KCB’s brand in the DRC market and beyond.

“We have found a partner with a proven and trusted history of serving and supporting customers, businesses, and communities. Combining our common legacies and our complementary footprints will strengthen our ability to serve our communities and regional customers and provide solutions that make a difference in people’s lives. The acquisition extends our reach by providing customers access to a larger banking network and an expanded array of services. Our shared banking philosophies will provide significant long-term value for our shareholders, employees, and customers. I am incredibly excited about this opportunity and look forward to welcoming new customers and team members to the KCB family,” Russo said.

KCB Group will operate TMB with its current brand and will enhance the current business operating model with the capabilities KCB has built over time in systems and processes. This will build on the strengths of TMB and enable TMB to deliver significant incremental value by being part of KCB.

“We see significant business opportunities from this acquisition arising from delivering innovative financial services to customers, growing linkages between customers in our region and realizing operational efficiencies which will deliver tangible value to key stakeholders,” Russo said.

In the nine months ending September 2022, KCB Group Plc’s net profit rose 21.4% to KShs.30.6 billion on the back of sustained growth from both Net interest and non-funded income lines. This was a jump from KShs.25.2 billion reported for the same period last year.

TMB is one of DRC’s largest banks, with US$1.7 billion in total assets and a strong offering in Retail, SME, Corporate and Digital banking channels. TMB’s bank branch network of 109 branches is supported by a substantial agency banking network, alongside a representative office in Belgium. In the DRC, the Bank commands an 11 percent market share as measured by total assets and is home to more than one in five banks accounts in the country.

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