Skye Bank picked as buyer for Mainstreet Bank

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Nigeria’s state-owned rescue bank AMCON has picked mid-tier lender Skye Bank as the winning bidder for the nationalised Mainstreet Bank, AMCON said on Saturday.

Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) had sought bidders for the sale of its 100 percent stake in Mainstreet Bank, one of three banks nationalised following a $4 billion central bank bailout that saved several Nigerian lenders from near bankruptcy in 2009.

An AMCON statement did not give details of the agreed price for the sale.

It said Fidelity Bank had been chosen as the reserve bidder in the event that first choice Skye Bank and Cedar One Investment Partners Limited could not complete the transaction as agreed.

Last month, AMCON selected HBCL Investment Services Limited (HISL), a private commercial bank, as the successful bidder to buy the nationalised Enterprise Bank.

AMCON said its decision followed a “rigorous and competitive bidding process” in which 25 foreign and local entities had initially shown interest. Barclays Africa and local investment firm Afrinvest acted as advisers for the sale.

Mainstreet, with over 200 branches, is the second of the three nationalised banks to be put up for sale by AMCON, which was set up to help resolve the 2009 banking crisis, triggered by reckless lending and a stock market collapse in 2008.

Afribank, Spring Bank and Bank PHB, were nationalised in 2011. AMCON then recapitalised them and changed their names to Mainstreet Bank, Enterprise Bank and Keystone Bank, respectively.

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