British banking giant Barclays is to sell its remaining 7.4% stake in South African banking group Absa, marking the end of an almost century-long tenure on the continent.
The offloading of 63,072,652 shares at ZAR 169 (£8.51) each will raise approximately £538 million, Barclays says, with an expected loss of £31 million on the investment.
Barclays will sell its Absa shares to institutional investors via an accelerated bookbuild placing.
The firm bought a majority stake in the South African lender in 2005 and rebranded the group to Barclays Africa, but the name switched back to Absa Group in 2018.
The bank announced in 2016 it planned to leave Africa and consolidate after a tumultuous year and instead focus on its UK and corporate arms.
At the time, Barclays said it planned to sell its then 62% stake in Barclays Africa Group Limited (BAGL) – a merger of Absa Group and Barclays’ African operations – over the coming years. It has been slowly reducing its shareholding since and sold a similar 7.4% stake in April for £526 million.
According to CityAM, Barclays’ only remaining presence in Africa will now be a representative office in Johannesburg, supporting its investment, private and corporate banking clients.
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