Fresh facts have emerged about the stunning FBN Holdings transaction that has dominated market discussions, disrupted the status quo at Nigeria’s oldest bank, and reintroduced a significant player into the bank and its holdco. The largest single week transaction since January 2023 and the largest for FBN since 2012, sources say the transaction is worth at least 100bn including the share sales and other costs.
Between Thursday and Monday July 6 and 10, over 4.8 billion FBN shares were acquired on the market by Barbican Capital. In a statement from the company on July 7, it mentioned that it had “notified FBN Holdings Plc (FBN) and regulatory authorities of the acquisition of 4,770,269,843 shares of FBN by its affiliate company, Barbican Capital Limited. This purchase is in addition to previously disclosed interests by HGL’s affiliates.”
We can now exclusively reveal that contrary to widespread speculation, the company, Barbican Capital (owned by Obafemi Otudeko and Foluke Oyeleye) is an affiliate of Honeywell Group and is driven and supported by HGL’s strong management team who have diverse deal and board experience.
Obafemi Otudeko, Managing Director of Honeywell Group is a seasoned investment professional that has led many of HGL’s strategic investments and transactions. Including the group’s multi-million dollar divestment from Airtel Nigeria to Bharti Airtel and the recently completed sale of Honeywell Flour Mills to Flour Mills of Nigeria, the biggest capital market transaction of 2022.
With over 25 years’ experience he is a board operator who has sat on the boards of some of Nigeria’s most impactful companies including Airtel Nigeria, First Bank of Nigeria Ltd and Honeywell Flour Mills Plc. A Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, he has deep financial services pedigree working across various sectors with a focus on corporate finance and value creation through investments.
Foluke Oyeleye has nearly 30 years international work experience across the telecommunication, financial Services, FMCG, and the Oil & Gas sectors. An associate of the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers, she is a capital market professional and a member of the Chartered Institute of Directors Nigeria and UK. She holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and sits on the board of NGX Regulation Limited.
The HGL management team “with over 150-years combined experience in various professional qualifications and specialties“ delivered the transaction and will be responsible for driving value by bringing to bear its significant deal and investment experience both in Nigeria and across the world. They have worked on transactions exceeding $15billion dollars across multiple continents with international firms including Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein, Standard Chartered, Standard Bank and Deutsche Bank. The team also has s strong risk management pedigree of professionals focused on proper governance and finance control across its investment portfolio.
In a letter to the Chairman of FBN Holdings and published in Thisday on Monday July 10, Obafemi Otudeko explains that “Honeywell Group Limited (HGL) is a dedicated long-term investor committed to investing in great businesses with immense growth potential. Our approach involves working closely with stakeholders with a shared vision to foster the creation and enhancement of value for all. We understand that this requires time and patience. Our intention is to follow this approach in respect of our investment in FBN Holdings, an iconic institution which we greatly respect and with which we have a deep and long-term relationship, as customers, investors, and board member.”
In a notice to the NGX meanwhile, FBN confirms that Honeywell Group’s “affiliate, Barbican Capital Limited has acquired an aggregate of 4,770,269,843 units of shares from the Company’s issued share capital of 35,895,292,791, as at the above referenced date.”
Honeywell Group was in 1972 and has been a catalyst for various Nigerian businesses over the course of five decades.
Obafemi further stated “Honeywell Group Limited (HGL) is a dedicated long-term investor committed to investing in great businesses with immense growth potential. Our approach involves working closely with stakeholders with a shared vision to foster the creation and enhancement of value for all. We understand that this requires time and patience. Our intention is to follow this approach in respect of our investment in FBN Holdings, an iconic institution which we greatly respect and with which we have a deep and long-term relationship, as customers, investors, and board members.”
Otudeko also reiterated Honeywell Group’s “intention to work with all stakeholders to create value for all shareholders. We enjoy long-standing personal relationships with the company’s other key shareholders, and we look forward to leveraging these relationships as we collectively work towards enhancing the value of FBN Holdings Plc.” The market capitalisation of FBN Holdings Plc, last week appreciated by N116.66 billion following the purchase.
Sources say a meeting is expected between the Barbican/Honeywell team and FBN stakeholders this week although no date has been confirmed.