Private equity firms AfricInvest, Catalyst invest in Kenya’s Prime Bank

AdobeStock 170675494Private equity firms AfricInvest and Catalyst Principal Partners have acquired a minority stake in Prime Bank Limited

The investment was achieved through AfricInvest Azure, a special purpose vehicle formed by Tunisia’s AfricInvest and Kenya’s Catalyst Fund II, the parties said in a statement.

The transaction represented another significant investment in East Africa by AfricInvest, following on several previous successful acquisitions in the region through predecessor funds.

The transaction followed Prime Bank’s recent fully-subscribed private placement, the acquisition of a majority stake in Tausi Assurance, and the opening of several new branches throughout Kenya.

Prime Bank, established in 1992 in Kenya, offers an array of corporate and SME banking services through its branch and digital infrastructure, the parties added.

The bank has a regional presence through its affiliates in Malawi, Botswana, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe as well as operating in the insurance sector through its subsidiary, Tausi Assurance.

Skander Oueslati, chief investment officer for AfricInvest, said, “The transaction is reflective of the type of investments AfricInvest pursues, with an emphasis on sustainable growth, regional expansion, innovation, strong management capacity, and clear visibility on stakeholder value creation. We are excited to play a part in this journey and will be fully supportive by leveraging our network and expertise.”

Bharat Jani, managing director of Prime Bank, commented, “Prime Bank welcomes this new partnership with AfricInvest and Catalyst, which further strengthens our capital base in order to carry out strategic plans which include institutionalising the governance and shareholding, expanding locally and regionally, optimising services, offering new products, and further digitalising operations while continuing to provide enhanced services to our customers.”

Executive Director Amar Kantaria added, “The investment is a significant milestone in Prime Bank’s journey towards becoming one of the leading banking groups in the region and we are excited about the prospect of working together with our new partners in carrying out the bank’s vision.”

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