Fidelity Bank to List $500m Eurobond on Irish Stock Exchange
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Tier-2 lender in Nigeria, Fidelity Bank Plc, has announced its intention to raise about $500 million Eurobond to be used for financing the tender offer of the existing $300 million notes and for its general banking purposes.
A statement signed by the chief executive of the financial institution, Mr Nnamdi Okonkwo, stated that the senior unsecured medium term deal notes would be listed on the Irish Stock Exchange, with the expectation that the notes will be traded on its regulated market.
According to Mr Okonkwo, both the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Securities and Exchnage Commission (SEC) have given “no objection” approvals to the transaction.
“Fidelity Bank Plc is pleased to notify the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) and the investing public of its intention to launch up to $500 million senior unsecured medium term deal notes.
“The bank intends to list the notes on the Irish Stock Exchange, with the expectation that the notes will be traded on its regulated market. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have given ‘no objection’ approvals to the transaction.
“The bank intends to issue the notes directly but will retain the flexibility to substitute the issuer with an offshare special purpose vehicle, where market conditions require and allow for such, pprior to the maturity of the notes.
“The bank intends to utilise the net proceeds of the notes to finance the tender offer of the existing notes and for its general banking purposes.
“The bank will pay the net proceeds from the notes issuance after settling the existing notes into its foreign currency or converted into Naira, depending on the bank’s requirement from time to time.
“A certificate of capital importation will not be obtained in respect of the proceeds of the notes that are not converted into Naira because a CCI is only issued in respect of capital imported into Nigeria and converted into Naira.
“The bank intends to make principal repayment and interest payments on the notes from its foreign currency reserves since it will not be able to obtained access to the Nigerian foreign exchange market for the purpose of making such payments.
“Notwithstanding the foregoing, the bank may obtain the approval of the CBN to access the official foreign exchange market if for any reason the bank does not have sufficient currency reserves to meet the principal and interest payments due on the notes.
“The bank intends to make announcement regarding planned investor meetings in Europe and the United States in respect of the transaction.
“The commencement of the transaction will however be subject to finalising the transaction documentation and prevailing market conditions,” the statement to the NSE said.
Kuda Increases Women in Product Team by 87%, Engineering Team by 144%
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
A financial technology (fintech) company operating in Nigeria and the United Kingdom, Kuda, has disclosed that it has continued to give equal opportunity to its male and female employees.
According to the Chief People Officer at Kuda, Ms Rosie Hewat, “Over the past year, we have increased the number of female hires by 133 per cent, grown the number of women on our Product team by 87 per cent and increased the female members of our Engineering team by 144 per cent.”
She further said, “We’re also proud to announce that the ratio of female-to-male employees at Kuda is now 1:1,” noting that these deliberate equity-promoting initiatives have made Kuda remain “a workplace of reference.”
Ms Hewat noted that to promote equity and raise advocacy for women’s inclusion and visibility, Kuda came up with a month-long series of activities to commemorate this year’s International Women’s Day.
International Women’s Day is a global event celebrated annually on March 8 as a focal point for giving proper attention to the rights of women and issues about their well-being, such as gender equality, reproductive rights, and protection against violence and abuse. The global theme for this year’s IWD is Embrace Equity.
Built around the theme, the goal of Kuda’s IWD activities is to seek more opportunities for women to make progress in their personal and professional lives, as well as to reposition women for economic growth and success in careers and businesses.
The IWD activities planned to stretch the entire month of March include a showcase of the impact that Kuda has made in promoting gender equity from 2022 to 2023. The showcase will also include the company’s further commitment to gender equity.
“As an equal opportunity-promoting organisation, we are passionate about promoting a healthy work environment where everyone, irrespective of gender, can aspire, reach the top of their career and realise their personal goals.
“We have always been intentional about building an organisation where gender equity is an obvious norm, and we are excited to report that we have made progress with reflecting this core essence, particularly within our Engineering and Product teams. This is a part of our growth process, and we will continue to work towards building the type of workplace we dream of,” she stated.
She revealed that over the past year, steps taken by Kuda to promote gender equity include fine-tuning its school-to-workplace internship programme aimed to imbue young engineers and product managers with the requisite skills for career progression.
Other steps include the development of a recruitment model that incentivises peer referrals, offering more opportunities for product management trainees to become product managers at Kuda, and the expansion of the Engineering and Product teams to onboard more women into leadership roles.
More progressive initiatives are being championed by the company’s woman-led Diversity, Inclusion and Equity committee.
Ms Hewat disclosed further that the company, in 2022, bolstered career growth for 20 young women it sponsored to the Africa Girls in Tech boot camp.
The programme, in partnership with Africa Agility, afforded the beneficiaries opportunity to learn tech and product skills and helped them get internships at tech startups or start freelancing.
Ecobank Takes Financial Planning Education To Schools
Ecobank Nigeria last week embarked on financial education for Secondary School students across the country on personal financial management, including savings, budgeting, and investment being part of activities to commemorate Global Money Week (GMW).
Tutoring the students of Comprehensive School Management and Technology, New Layout, Abakaliki, Ebonyi state, Managing Director, Ecobank Nigeria, Bolaji Lawal, reiterated that, “Saving is the act of putting money aside for future use.
“There are different ways to save, like putting your money in a savings box or through savings groups, but the recommended way is in a bank account. You can save for short-term goals such as buying clothes, buying books or long-term goals such as going to university, buying a car, etc.”
Mr Lawal further advised the students on the investment avenues such as stocks, bonds, and real estate, stating that the choice of investment should align with their financial plan. The interactive session saw the students asking questions which were promptly responded to.
The Ecobank Nigeria Managing Director, who was represented by the Branch Manager, Abakaliki, Mr Chris Igili, explained to the students and staff of the school how to earn and make money, the various investment channels and the need to donate for positive social impact, amongst others. He emphasized that sound financial planning guarantees a fulfilling future.
The 11th edition of GMW with the theme, Plan your Money, plant your Future, which took place between March 20 and 26, saw other Senior Management staff of Ecobank Nigeria tutoring and mentoring students across several schools in major cities across the country, including Lagos, Ibadan, Abuja and Yenagoa.
Global Money Week is an annual global celebration initiated by Child & Youth Finance International (CYFI), with local and regional events and activities aimed at inspiring children and youths to learn about money, saving, creating livelihoods, gaining employment and becoming entrepreneurs. It is also aimed at empowering the next generation to be confident, responsible and skilled economic citizens.
Stanbic IBTC Commends Customers for Embracing Savings Culture
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Customers of Stanbic IBTC Bank have been applauded for embracing a savings culture despite tough economic climes.
This commendation was made recently at the live draw for the Reward4Saving Promo Season two held in Lagos, where 70 more customers who met the minimum saving criteria across seven regions were rewarded with cash prizes.
The promo, launched in 2022, aims to encourage a savings culture among customers and reward the same habit. The campaign is open to all Stanbic IBTC Bank customers who have saved a minimum of N10,000 in their Stanbic IBTC Bank savings account for 30 days. The cash reward prizes range from N100,000 to N2 million.
As part of the bank’s effort to ensure a transparent and fair process, regulatory officials and the media attended the selection of winners through a live draw.
While speaking at the event, the Head of Consumer Clients at the lender, Ms Sadiya Ojo, reiterated the bank’s commitment to continue to reward its customers for their dedication and loyalty.
She also assured that the company would continue to provide innovative financial solutions that meet its customers’ needs.
“Stanbic IBTC has rewarded over 700 customers with N100,000 since the commencement of the Reward4Saving Promo Season two. We still have one monthly draw, one quarterly draw, and the grand finale before the promo ends.
“We actively encourage customers to build healthy financial habits and get more money as a reward for succeeding,” Ms Ojo said.
On his part, the Head of Data Enablement and Insights at Stanbic IBTC Bank, Mr Kolawole Adebayo, appreciated the regulatory authorities’ support and guidance in ensuring a fair process, noting that deploying technology enables the selection to be made through best practices.
“We carry out these draws using computerised technology. We see all the processes, from client transactions to data collection, applying all the business cases presented to the point where the algorithm pushes data into the draw machines.
“All of these are without human manipulation too. This process speaks to the transparency in our process to give every qualified customer an equal chance to be winners,” he said.
To participate in the promo, customers can download the Stanbic IBTC mobile app, dial *909*37#, visit the web portal or any Stanbic IBTC Bank branch or an @ease agent to open an account or @ease wallet and save at least N10,000 for 30 days.
The Reward4Saving Promo is one of the many initiatives introduced by Stanbic IBTC to reward its customers and encourage a savings culture in Nigeria.
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