By Emesakoru Enifome
Sanlam has acquired the remaining stake in the Nigerian insurance business FBN Insurance from its partner, FBN Holdings Plc (FBNH), giving the Group 100% ownership of FBN Insurance Limited (FBNI) and its subsidiary, FBN General Insurance Limited.
The transaction, conducted through Sanlam’s business cluster focused on emerging markets, Sanlam Emerging Markets (SEM), has received all the necessary regulatory approvals. FBN Holdings Plc held 65% of FBN Insurance, while Sanlam held 35%.
Heinie Werth, SEM’s Chief Executive Officer said: ”This transaction is in line with our business strategy to deepen our presence in our existing markets and highlights and enhances our long-standing commitment to the Nigerian market. Sanlam exercised its pre-emptive right to acquire the remaining shareholding of FBNI and in line with our partnership philosophy that underpins our business model, we will introduce local shareholding at an appropriate time in the future. This transaction is evidence of our belief and confidence in the value and future of the business as well as the skilled management team and staff. Moreover, we are committed to Nigeria and view it as a key market on the continent. The African continent as a whole remains important and integral part of Sanlam’s growth.”
Commenting on the divestment, UK Eke, MFR, Group Managing Director, FBN Holdings Plc said: ”The divestment is in line with the Group’s medium to long term strategic objectives. This will ultimately improve our shareholders’ wellbeing and deliver greater value to all the stakeholders.”
FBN Insurance was started as a JV between Sanlam and FBN Holdings as a life insurer in 2011 and after a successful growth trajectory, expanded into general insurance by establishing FBN General Insurance in 2015.
”FBN is a well-established, 120-year-old company with an impeccable reputation in the Nigerian market and the financial services industry as a whole. Over the years we have enjoyed a mutually beneficial partnership with FBNH, and we will continue to cooperate with them in the future. FBNI has grown into a significant insurance player in the market with a strong management team and we look forward to continuing to deliver excellent financial services and value to our clients and stakeholders,” Mr Werth concluded.