First Bank Nigeria, FBN Holdings Plc has formally notified the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) of on-going discussions with its partner Sanlam Emerging Markets (“Sanlam”) the owners of 35 percent equity in FBN Insurance Limited (FBNI)regarding the proposed sale of the Company’s 65 percent equity in FBN Insurance Limited.
According to information gathered in a notice sent to the Exchange and signed by the Company Secretary Seye Kosoko,FBNH stated that “the move is in line with the “Group’s strategic objectives” adding that they are currently engaging the regulators for the necessary approvals. FBN Holdings however assured the Exchange that further announcement will be made if the transaction is concluded. The proposed divestment is said to be a strategic business decision for FBNH. When completed, the transaction will involve the transfer of FBN Holdings’ 65 percent stake in FBN Insurance Limited to Sanlam.”
The notification to the NSE is one of the statutory steps required of listed companies when considering a market-sensitive decision or transaction. In deference to Rule 17.5 of the Rule Book of the Exchange 2015, FBN Holdings first notified the market of the development in the Directors’ Report Section of its Audited Financial Statements for the year ended December 31, 2019 which was released to the Exchange on Monday 6, April 2020.
For full year December 31, 2019, the Company posted a Profit Before Tax (PBT) of N84 billion representing a growth of 31 percent over 2018 PBT of N64 billion. Profit After Taxation (PAT) at N74 billion was a growth of 27 percent over N58billion reported for 2018. The company’s Board of Directors has also recommended the payment of the sum of N13.64billion (38kobo/Share) as dividend to its Shareholders representing a growth of 46% over prior year dividend. The proposed divestment will unlock significant value to leverage the Group’s strength in its core business for which it is renowned.
FBN Insurance was founded as a Life Insurer in 2010 with a vision to be Nigeria’s first choice in risk underwriting, wealth preservation and financial security. Today, the company has grown to become one of the best insurance companies in Nigeria with a subsidiary that undertakes general insurance business offering a broad range of investment and risk underwriting products. FBNI is known and well respected for its quality of service, integrity, innovation and professionalism. It was awarded the ‘Best Life Insurance Company in Nigeria’ for the past four years consecutively.
Sanlam Group has been associated with and is the other Shareholder of FBN Insurance Plc since it was established in 2010. Sanlam with over 100years experience and expertise in Insurance, Asset Management, Wealth Management and Investments is one of the leading Insurance companies in Africa.