By Elisabeth Adegbesan

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, explained yesterday that Polaris Bank was sold to Strategic Capital Investment Limited, SCIL, as it offered the highest financial offer of N1.355 trillion.

Mr. Osita Nwanisobi, Director of Corporate Communication Department of CBN, rejected allegations to the contrary by an online news outlet and stated in a press release yesterday, “For the administration, the public is referred to the October 20, 2022 statement by CBN & Asset Nigerian management corporation AMCON announces the sale of 100 percent shares in Polaris Bank to a new core investor, Strategic Capital Investment Limited (SCIL), providing extensive details of the process through which the sale was conducted.

“Contrary to what is stated in the aforementioned online publication, the divestiture of Polaris Bank was guided by a Divestment Committee (Committee) composed of senior representatives from AMCON & CBN and supported by reputable legal and financial advisors.

“In addition, the divestment mode, process and decision received the required approvals from the board of directors and regulatory authorities.

“At no time has any other party made a higher purchase offer than falsely claimed by the online publication.

“The entity in question, Fairview Acquisition Partners, had expressed interest in acquiring two banks, including Polaris Bank, for a total consideration of N1.2 trillion, an indicative offer that significantly discounted Polaris Bank’s existing N1.305 trillion debt. to AMCON and thus represented a material loss to the federal government.

“Notwithstanding, Fairview Acquisition Partners, along with twenty-four (24) other parties, were invited by the financial advisors to participate in the sale process through the signing of a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), the first stage of the process.

“The financial advisors informed the committee that Fairview Acquisition Partners did not execute or return the NDA, despite verbal acknowledgment of receipt of the agreement and following follow-up by the financial advisors. Therefore, Fairview Acquisition Partners did not take the opportunity to update their offer by participating in the divestment process and thus did not make a binding purchase offer for Polaris Bank.

“The divestment has been conducted based on relevant laws, global best practices for bank resolutions and required regulatory approvals. The Committee, together with its legal and financial advisors, carried out a thorough technical and financial evaluation of the purchase proposals, assessing the suitability and decency of the promoters, the bid price received versus reserve price, financing structure and financial strength, strategy and growth plans. others.

“After evaluation, the originators of the strategic target vehicle, SCIL, emerged as the preferred buyer, with the most comprehensive technical/financial purchase proposal and highest rated growth plans for Polaris Bank.

“In addition to passing all suitability and decency tests, the promoters also made the highest financial offer for the bank, which was significantly above the core valuation and reserve price. SCIL’s binding offer included an immediate upfront payment of N50 billion and full responsibility for the debt of N1,305 trillion to AMCON, essentially a total purchase price of N1,355 trillion.

“This offer was the most competitive and provided taxpayers and the federal government with more than full recovery of intervention costs. Through the sale, the CBN and the federal government achieved a successful value-driven solution from a strategic financial institution. “This curiously timed online publication deliberately misrepresents the circumstances surrounding the sale of a federal government strategic asset.”

The post CBN Defends Sale of Polaris Bank to SCIL appeared first on Vanguard News.


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