South Africa’s fourth biggest bank, Nedbank, on Thursday said it had exercised its rights to subscribe for a 20 percent shareholding in West Africa’s lender, Ecobank Transnational.

In terms of the deal, Nedbank will be given the right to be represented on the Ecobank board.

Nedbank had appointed Graham Dempster, Nedbank’s COO, to join the Ecobank board while Ecobank will exercise its right to an appointment on the Nedbank board.

These board appointments are subject to regulatory approvals, it emerged on Thursday.

Nedbank will subscribe for 4,512,618,890 new Ecobank shares to be issued for $493.4 million in cash.

Ecobank and Nedbank launched their strategic banking alliance in 2008. This provided a unique one-bank experience to their clients across the largest banking network in Africa.

The network comprised more than 2.000 branches in 39 African countries.

In 2011, Nedbank provided Ecobank with a $285 million facility in support of Ecobank’s corporate development programmes, including its acquisition of Oceanic Bank in Nigeria.

This provided Nedbank with subscription rights which it could elect to exercise between 24 and 36 months to become a 20 percent shareholder in Ecobank.

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