The board of directors of Access Bank Plc yesterday cancelled an extraordinary general meeting of shareholders of the bank called to seek shareholders’ consideration for new capital raising.
The bank did not provide reasons for the cancellation of the previously scheduled February 1, 2019 meeting. Market sources said the cancellation might not be unconnected with the need for clarity and streamlining of key considerations in the ongoing business combination between Access Bank and Diamond Bank Plc.
“We regret any inconvenience that this cancellation may cause our shareholders,” Access Bank stated in a terse notice of cancellation.
Directors of Access Bank had late December 2018 called for an extraordinary general meeting of shareholders to approve new equity issue. Access Bank planned to raise N75 billion from existing shareholders through a rights issue.
At the meeting, shareholders of Access Bank were expected to consider increase in the authorised share capital of the bank from N20 billion to N35 billion, thus increasing the shares from 38.0 billion ordinary shares of 50 Kobo each and 2.0 billion preference shares of 50 Kobo each to 68 billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each and 2.0 billion preference shares of 50 kobo each through the creation of 30 billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each.
The cancelled meeting was also expected to authorise the directors of Access Bank to raise additional equity capital of up to a maximum of N75 billion by way of a rights issue in the ratio, on such terms and conditions and on such dates as may be determined by the board.
Under the proposals for the meeting, if the rights issue is undertaken prior to the implementation date of the merger between Access Bank and Diamond Bank, the rights issue will also include a provision that allows Access Bank to issue shares to shareholders of Diamond Bank, under the same terms.