CBZ Holdings Limited (CBZHL) is close to buying a controlling stake in ZB Financial Holdings Limited (ZBFHL), according to a report by NewsDay Business. The acquisition would create Zimbabwe’s largest financial services provider, with CBZHL holding a 68% stake, FMHL holding a 17% stake, and existing ZBFHL shareholders holding a 15% stake.
The acquisition is subject to approval by the Competition Tariff Commission (CTC). However, a source close to the deal told NewsDay Business that the acquisition is “imminent” and that the CTC approvals are “the only thing left to be finalized.”
This is part of CBZHL’s strategy to become a “financial services behemoth” that can attract foreign investment to support national development projects. CBZHL already has a strong presence in the banking, insurance, and investment sectors, and the acquisition of ZBHL would further strengthen its position in these sectors.
The buying is also expected to create synergies between the two companies, which could lead to improved efficiency and profitability. For example, CBZHL could use ZBHL’s branch network to expand its reach, and ZBHL could use CBZHL’s expertise in insurance and investment to grow its business.
The acquisition of ZBHL is a significant development in the Zimbabwean financial services sector. It is a sign of the consolidation that is taking place in the sector, and it is likely to have a major impact on the competitive landscape.
CBZHL had total assets valued at nearly US$1,4 billion as of the end of last year, while ZBFHL assets were equivalent to nearly US$470 million.
As of the end of 2022, ZBFHL’s top three biggest shareholders were Datvest Nominees (PVT) Limited at 34%, Transnational Holdings Limited (23,43%) and ZB Financial Holdings Limited (10,08%).