SBM takes 75 per cent of Chase deposits, liabilities

Mauritius’ SBM Holdings will acquire 75 per cent of the value of certain deposits of Chase Bank plus matched liabilities, the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) said on Friday.

The CBK has been seeking a strategic investor for Chase, which has been under receivership since April 2016 after failing to meet its financial obligations.

The Central Bank said last week that SBM Holdings had made a binding offer for some of the bank’s assets and liabilities.

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“We are in the home stretch,” CBK Governor Patrick Njoroge told a news conference about the offer. Depositors at Chase will have access to 75 per cent of their deposits in the next few months.

Not contested

Njoroge said these deposits were not blocked or contested in court cases related to the bank’s receivership. “On the loans side, it will take a bit more time,” Njoroge said.

He said SBM also intended to take up the maximum number of Chase staff and branches but did not give details.

Chase was the third medium-to-small lender to be closed in Kenya over a period of nine months, rattling investors in East Africa’s richest economy, where the level of gross non-performing loans reported by banks rose sharply in 2015.

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The CBK has not found a solution for the remaining 25 per cent of Chase not acquired by SBM, Njoroge said. He did not give a value for the stake purchased by SBM. In addition to banking, SBM has an asset management and stockbroking unit. 

Mauritius’ SBM HoldingsCBKCentral Bank of KenyaChase Bank