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VENTURES AFRICA – First Rand bank, one of South Africa’s five largest banking groups, hopes to grow its Nigerian business by 50 percent this year, as it plans to embark on a series of investment projects.
Following the 2012 launch of its Nigerian investment unit, Rand Merchant Bank (RMB), First Bank has been involved in a series of project across diverse sectors including Oando’s acquisition of ConocoPhillips and Dangote’s $3.3 billion deal for a 400,000 barrels per day refinery and fertiliser plant offering both finances and advisory services, a report by BusinessDay revealed.
First Rand is keen to further deepen its presence in the rapidly emerging market by increasing its participation in the country’s top project, and has set its sight on growing its business by more than half.
“We will see a 50 percent increase in performance across all our businesses,” Michael Larbie, CEO of RMB told BusinessDay in an interview.
“The prospects for 2014 are quite encouraging,” he added.
First Rand is poised to embark on a number of financial commitments this year in key projects such as the new Lekki sea port, expected to be the largest container holder upon completion, and a fertiliser project. It is also has eyes on the recently unbundled power sector.
Following the completion of the power sector privatization process, FMB is keen to keen to establish itself as the prime candidate to meet the financial gap for successor companies lacking capital to kick-start infrastructure upgrades.