HF begins hunt for a strategic investor

HF begins hunt for a strategic investor

HFC Group CEO Robert Kibaara speaks at a past event. PHOTO | SALATON NJAU | NMG Mortgage lender HF Group has formally started the hunt for a strategic investor after it invited suitors to place their bids.

HF Group chief executive Robert Kibaara said Thursday the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) listed financier had launched the search for a strategic investor in a regulatory filing to shareholders.

“HF Group Plc has commenced the process of inviting strategic investors to acquire a stake in the Company as disclosed in the published 2020 financial statements,” said Mr Kibaara.

“The aim of the proposed transaction is to strengthen the Group’s capital in line with the Group’s current strategic direction. This process is ongoing and as at the date of this announcement no formal transaction has been concretized.”

Mr Kibaara did not divulge additional details on the sale transaction including the size of the stake it is willing to dispose.

“If and when a transaction materialises, details of that transaction will be announced to shareholders in compliance with the listing rules and Capital Market Authority regulations applicable to it,” he said.

Britam in March this year said it would sell a majority stake in HF Group to focus on the insurance business.

Britam planned to sell part of its 48.2 percent stake in HF Group to one of the country’s big banks as part of its investment portfolio review.

Last week, Equity chief executive James Mwangi said the bank would review its interest in HF, seven years after selling its 24.7 percent stake to insurance group Britam.

“We exited from HF Group …but if it becomes available, we would evaluate it just like we evaluate other opportunities,” Mr Mwangi had told the Business Daily in an interview.

Britam invested in HF with the goal of accessing new customers and expanding its real estate investment portfolio with the mortgage financier which has been in the property business for decades.The insurer invested more than Sh5 billion to acquire the HF stake through several transactions, including the buyout of Equity’s 24.7 percent ownership in the mortgage lender in 2014 for Sh2.8 billion.HF, like other mortgage lenders, has suffered in recent years due to the capping of lending rates between September 2016 and November 2019, a slowdown in the real estate market and more recently the economic fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic.Potential suitors will be seeking to ride on HF to grow into the mortgage market.HF is ranked […]

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