Atlas Mara, the Africa-focused financial services group owned by former Barclays chief executive Bob Diamond, has sold its 10.1 per cent stake in Brainworks Capital Management, which describes itself as "Zimbabwe's pre-eminent private equity investment and advisory firm".
The deal netted Atlas Mara $8.72m (£5.56m), 1.4 times Brainworks' reported book value. In a statement this morning, the company said the deal was "consistent" with its focus on its sub-Saharan African banking operations and strategy of selling non-core investments acquired in connection with its acquisition of ADC African Development Corporation.
The move comes weeks after Zimbabwe decided to scrap its currency, which after hyperinflation in the early 2000s is almost worthless, altogether, opting instead to use the dollar.
In April, Atlas Mara was reported to be in talks to buy a 45 per cent stake in Banque Populaire du Rwanda for $22.5m, the company's second banking acquisition in Rwanda.