September 2012 – African Capital Alliance (ACA) led a consortium of international investors (Union Global Partners) to recapitalize Union Bank of Nigeria Plc (UBN). The Consortium invested $500 million for a controlling stake in the bank. ACA invested $75 million as part of the Consortium.Union Bank, the former Barclays Bank in Nigeria, has operated for nearly a century. The bank represents one of the most attractive industry opportunities given its significant brand equity, robust client base and extensive retail infrastructure (about 400 branches). UBN offers the investor group a real opportunity for significant value-addition to a previously undermanaged asset. In addition to its commercial banking activities, UBN also owns subsidiaries that are active in real estate, insurance and asset management, and a fully licensed bank subsidiary in London.
Paul Kokoricha, head of ACA Private Equity fund, said that “the UBN deal is a landmark opportunity to return what was the leading commercial bank in Nigeria back to its rightful place by partnering a value-adding core investor group with solid management team”. The existing shareholders of Union Bank are enthusiastic that the attraction of a core investor and the recapitalization of the bank will transform UBN into a strong and transparent financial institution. According to the Executive Director, Corporate, International and Investment Banking and Treasury, Mr. Philip Ikeazor, “Shareholders unanimously voted in favour of all the options and plans of the recapitalization process, as recommended by the Board of Directors”.The consortium comprises African Capital Alliance, African Development Corporation, Corsair Capital, FMO, the Chandler Corporation, and Standard Chartered Private Equity. These partners bring complementing expertise and the experience required to restore UBN’s market offering and competitiveness. The investor group’s mission is to transform Union Bank into a leading bank in Nigeria which builds long-term sustainable value for all stakeholders. It plans to achieve this through investing in systems, processes and infrastructure to deliver customer-centric products and services. African Capital Alliance (ACA) is a leading independent investment firm focusing on Nigeria and the broader West African region. Formed in 1997, ACA has, to date, obtained aggregate capital commitments of over $750m across several funds raised from its offices in Lagos. ACA has a proven track record of successfully exiting investments and delivering strong returns to investors. ACA is currently investing out of its third fund (CAPE III), a $400 million private equity fund.