Bob Diamond's Atlas Mara sells 35 per cent stake to Fairfax to fund Nigerian expansion

William Turvill
Follow William
Business Leaders And Politicians Attend The CBI Annual Conference
Former Barclays boss Bob Diamond founded Atlas Mara (Source: Getty)

Bob Diamond’s Atlas Mara has announced plans to sell a 35 per cent stake to Fairfax Africa to expand its investments in Nigeria.

London-listed Atlas Mara said today it will raise $200m (£158m) from existing shareholders, including Fairfax.

The firm said it would raise $100m from a share sale to existing investors, including Fairfax, and $100m from the issue of a convertible loan to Fairfax.

Read more: All change at Bob Diamond's Atlas Mara as chief exec steps down

Fairfax is then expected to have a total shareholding of at least 35 per cent and will nominate four directors to the board of nine. Diamond will continue in his role as chairman.

The investment will be used to fund the acquisition of an indirect shareholding in Union Bank of Nigeria from the Clermont Group for $55m.

The deal, subject to regulatory approval, will increase Atlas Mara’s stake in the bank to 44.5 per cent.

The Atlas Mara statement said: “A strategic partnership with Fairfax Africa creates a strong relationship between two like-minded, long-term investors in Africa.”

Read more: Ex-Barclays exec to take charge of Panmure as part of Bob Diamond takeover

Former Barclays boss Diamond said: “Our board is thrilled to announce this important series of transactions. We have a terrific new partner in Fairfax Africa – a strategic investor and partner who brings permanent capital and a shared vision of the banking opportunities in sub-Saharan Africa.

“With Fairfax, we are now better positioned to achieve our full potential and to benefit from the long-term trends we see in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa.

“Our team will continue to drive ‘execution, execution, execution,’ to deliver profitability, growth and shareholder value.”

Related articles