[South Africa] Arise acquires 12% stake in Equity Group Holdings and becomes single largest shareholder
Arise is pleased to announce the acquisition of a 12% stake in Equity Group Holdings Limited, the parent company of Equity Bank. Arise is now the single largest shareholder in this listed company, which boasts operations in six East African nations. With a client base in excess of 11.7 million the group has the largest number of deposit customers in Africa.
According to Arise CEO, Deepak Malik, this acquisition speaks directly to the core mandate of Arise, which is to invest in sustainable Financial Service Providers (FSPs) in Sub Saharan Africa to boost economic growth and job creation. “Arise aims to strengthen and develop effective, inclusive financial systems through collaborative long term partnerships with leading institutions such as the Equity Group”, said Malik.
“The financial services industry plays a crucial role in facilitating infrastructural and industrial development at national and regional levels. A broader, deeper financial sector facilitates the growth and prosperity of Africa’s businesses, from small-scale entrepreneurs to large corporations and promotes financial inclusion”, he added. “Having pioneered agency banking on the continent the Equity Group has an established track record, characterised by high growth and a solid financial performance and we are pleased to partner with them to advance the local banking sector”, said Malik.
Dr James Mwangi, Group CEO and Managing Director Equity Group Holdings welcomed the collaboration with Arise. “Equity’s vision is to champion the socio-economic prosperity of the people of Africa. We have endeavored to achieve this by being an innovative and inclusive provider of financial solutions. We are excited by the expanded opportunities this development presents, to combine our market leading position with Arise, who bring along their substantial resources as well as expertise, which we believe will be invaluable in accelerating the growth of our business. This transaction which is currently the largest of its kind in Sub Saharan Africa brings diversification to Equity’s capital base which is important for the Group,” said Mwangi.
Malik concluded by saying that with the support of Arise, Equity Group Holdings and Equity Bank is well-positioned to deliver future growth on the continent. Arise is owned by three key shareholders, namely Norfund, FMO and Rabobank.