27 April 2010 – Standard Chartered has entered into an agreement to acquire the African custody business from Barclays PLC. This will provide Standard Chartered with custody capabilities in its markets across Africa. The acquisition is subject to certain regulatory and other approvals, and is expected to be completed in 2010.
The African custody business forms a key part of Standard Chartered’s build-out of international custodian services, alongside existing capability in Asia and the Middle East. The acquisition adds direct custody capabilities in eight African markets (Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe) and indirect capabilities in a further eight markets (Egypt, Cote d’Ivoire, Malawi, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Tunisia and South Africa) provided through a network of third party sub-custodians via an operations hub in Mauritius. The new business will strengthen Standard Chartered’s regional product offering for both international and regional businesses, strengthening client relationships, whilst providing an additional source of liquidity to the Group.
As at 31 December 2009, the gross asset value that is the subject of the transaction was approximately USD3 million and customer assets under custody were approximately USD6.2 billion.
Commenting on the deal, Karen Fawcett, Group Head of Transaction Banking, said: “We are very pleased to have secured the acquisition of Barclays’ African custody business. This deal will ensure that we rapidly develop our custody capabilities in our core markets across Africa. It will also enable us to enhance our Wholesale Banking proposition and deepen our relationships with clients, meeting their increasing requirements for broader regional services.”
Barclays PLC’s African custody business has been consistently recognised as the Best Custodian Bank in Africa, receiving 19 awards in the 2008 Global Custodian Magazine Survey.
Mike Hart, CEO, Africa, said: “We continue to seize the opportunities that are presenting themselves in Africa. Following the publication of our record results in Africa in 2009, we remain confident in our strategy to deliver long-term, sustainable growth.”
This acquisition is another demonstration of the significant investment Standard Chartered Bank has been making in its African franchise over the last few years, following its recent purchase of First Africa (a leading African M&A advisory business) in 2009 and the opening of its new representative office in Angola, its fourteenth African market in early 2010.