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GSE On ADB 'Purported Takeover'   
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The Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) has temporarily suspended trading in the shares of Agricultural Development Bank Limited (ADB) following a purported takeover by Unibank.

In a statement copied to Peacefmonline.com, GSE claims the suspension which takes immediate effect is to allow for clarification of the news regarding the take-over.

"With reference to Section 7 of the GSE Automated Trading Rules (ATS), the Managing Director of the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE), in consultation with the Chairman of the GSE Council has suspended trading in the shares of ADB effective March 7, 2018. This is to allow the GSE clarify news on a purported take-over of ADB. The investing public will be duly informed of the outcome and resumption of trading in the shares of ADB" the statement indicated.

UniBank Takes Over ADB

Reports rife indicate that Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) – has pledged its shares, proceeds, entitlements and voting rights to uniBank, a leading wholly Ghanaian-owned bank.

The consortium, led by Belstar Capital – a turnkey project finance and implementation institution – also includes Starmount Development Company Limited, EDC Investments Limited and SIC-FSL.

These institutions took up a substantial stake (51%) in ADB’s Initial Public Offering (IPO) in 2016 when the bank announced its plans to go public.

With these 51 percent shares under the control of uniBank – including having majority voting rights – the bank (uniBank) can now determine the strategic direction of ADB.

By this move, the proceeds and entitlements attached to the shares – which include the voting rights at any general or extraordinary meetings and any future dividends that may accrue to those shares – have been transferred to uniBank.

BoG Steps in

However information gathered by Graphic online suggests that Bank of Ghana has ruled the take-over as null and void.

A source familiar with the BoG’s position on the matter said in confidence that the stance by the banking sector regulator is informed by the fact that uniBank as an entity does not have majority shares in ADB.

The decision by some shareholders of ADB to pledge their shares, proceeds, entitlement and voting rights to uniBank, leading to the alleged takeover was also not sanctioned by the BoG.
Source: Peacefmonline.com

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