- Category: Business and Economy
- Published on Thursday, 05 November 2009 00:00
- Written by Admin
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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has restored Dr. Mike Adenuga Jr. (CON) to the board of Equitorial Trust Bank (ETB), effectively returning the bank to the business mogul. The CBN formally announced the decision through a press release in
We had exclusively reported three weeks ago that the CBN was considering reinstating Adenuga to the ETB Board. The CBN had earlier intimated that having established that no criminal activity, such as insider lending and money laundering, was found against Adenuga, it decided to review the case and held a series of high level meetings with the ETB principal shareholder and his team on the way forward. One of the key decisions reached at the meetings was that Adenuga would dilute his shares at the bank and bring in new investors to address the reservation of the CBN over ownership structure. The CBN Governor, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, had also consulted widely with the CBN Committee of Governors, comprising the governor and his deputies before taking the final decision on the issue.
THISDAY had reported that though Sanusi is averse to "sole proprietorship" of banks because of deep-rooted concerns over internal checks and control, the CBN agreed to restore Adenuga to the ETB Board in the interest of fairness and professionalism, particularly in view of the constructive disposition of the business icon. The CBN confirmed this through the press release, saying that in response to a deed signed by the shareholders of ETB agreeing to inter alia dilute the shareholding structure of the bank, CBN had agreed to return Adenuga and accept the nomination by the shareholders of a few other non-executive directors to the board of ETB. According to informed sources, the decision of the apex bank to return ETB to Adenuga was heavily influenced by the fact that no criminal infraction was found against him as well as the prompt positive step he took to shore up the capital base of ETB with the injection of an initial capital of $150 million.
The CBN in the statement signed by its Head of Corporate Affairs, Muhammed Abdullahi, yesterday said it had granted the request of the shareholders to be allowed to rectify lapses identified in the bank and to subsequently take it over. However, the apex bank said it would closely monitor the implementation of agreed terms of covenant to ensure that the lapses were fully rectified in the overall interest of the banking system. Specifically, the statement said: "Following the Special Examination of all banks operating in the country and the subsequent actions by the CBN, the shareholders of Equitorial Trust Bank Limited requested the permission of the CBN to be allowed to rectify lapses identified in the bank. In pursuance to that, the shareholders executed a Deed of Covenant. "Having reviewed the terms and conditions of the Deeds of Covenant, the CBN has consented to the request aimed at further strengthening the bank.
In granting these requests, CBN noted that the Special Examination had not raised issues of serious supervisory concern or criminal activity by any member of the Board of ETB. "However, CBN will closely monitor the implementation of the terms of the Covenant to ensure that the lapses are fully rectified and in the overall interest of the banking system." According to the Deed of Covenant, the shareholders of ETB are to recapitalise the bank by way of injection of additional capital latest by June 30, 2010; restructure, diversify and enlarge the capital base of the bank either by way of a public offering of shares, securing a core investor or merger with a local bank within one year period and address the corporate governance issues in the bank, which were mainly ascribed to the previous Executive Management team. Other expectations from the shareholders going by the deed are the reconstitution of the Board of Directors of the bank through the retirement of two non-executive directors and the appointment of four new non-executive directors, subject to the approval of the CBN.
ETB is also expected to convene a general meeting of the bank's shareholders to ratify, through a resolution, all the nominated appointments to the bank's board. CBN sent shock waves within and outside
He has founded and successfully run high-profile companies in the most lucrative sectors of the economy including telecommunications, banking, oil and gas. His foray into banking commenced about 20 years ago when he established two banks, Devcom Merchant Band and Equitorial Trust Bank, both of which were merged to become the Equitorial Trust Bank during the consolidation exercise of 2005. In the oil sector, he also achieved a historic feat in December 1991 by being the first Nigerian to find and produce oil in commercial quantities at the Bella field. In 2000, he bought majority shares in the downstream oil company, National Oil, and transformed the loss-making company into a profitable business. Now renamed Conoil Plc, the company has been paying dividends to its shareholders since its acquisition.
Adenuga became a household name following his establishment of the Glo brand and his focus on Nigeria and Nigerians as the heartbeat and driving force of the company's competitive stance, as captured by its "Glo with Pride" and "Rule your world" slogans. It is the opinion of many that Adenuga has infused pride in Nigerians through the achievements of Globacom and Glo Mobile, which are currently operating mobile telecoms services in three countries and gateway services in four. The company's Glo 1 submarine cable with enormous bandwidth capacity and connections to over 17 countries in Africa and Europe is another landmark achievement that has deepened the pride and enhanced the image and reach of