CBN endorses Access/Diamond banks merger

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The proposed merger between Access Bank Plc and Diamond Plc has received heavyweight endorsement from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), which said it had no objection to the planned business combination.

The apex bank in a letter dated December 17, 2018, addressed to the Managing Director/CEO of Access Bank and signed by Director of Banking Supervision, Ahmad Abdullahi, said it had no objection to the proposal, advising the commercial bank to proceed to obtain other necessary regulatory approvals for the merger.

The CBN, in an apparent response to an application for pre-merger by Access Bank stated, “We refer to your letter dated December 17, 2018 on the above subject (application for pre-merger) and write to inform you that the Central Bank of Nigeria has no objection to your proposed merger with the Diamond Bank Plc.

“Furthermore, you are required to obtain other necessary regulatory approvals for the merger.”

Meanwhile, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has said it is waiting for formal application from the banks on the merger.

According to the apex capital market regulator, however, it is aware of the intention of the banks to go into a merger.

“Access Bank and Diamond Bank have both notified the commission and the general public. It is a notice to merge, they have not merged yet.

“SEC is awaiting their application on the matter. The SEC received on Monday, December 17, 2018, notice of intention by Diamond Bank & Access Bank to merge. The commission is currently waiting for their formal application,” SEC said in a statement.

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