November 30, 2017 / 5:27 PM / a year ago

Bank of Kigali aims to raise up to $100 mln via share issue in 2018

NAIROBI, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Rwanda’s Bank of Kigali plans to raise between $80 million and $100 million next year by issuing new shares to existing shareholders, its Chief Operating Officer said on Thursday.

The bank, founded 51 years ago, operates 79 outlets and an insurance business. Its shares were listed on the Rwandan stock exchange in 2011.

“Through the shareholders meeting next week, we are trying to open (the issue) for the current shareholders,” Desire Rumanyika, chief operating officer, told Reuters after the bank announced nine month earnings results.

“If we can’t get the money we are expecting then we shall go out for new shareholders.”

The COO said the aim was to expand the bank by making more loans and investing in online facilities.

The bank said it planned to raise the money by issuing an additional 350 million shares.

In August, Bank of Kigali had estimated the amount it wanted to raise at $60 to $100 million. It also said at the time other options included selling a stake to a strategic investor.

Rumanyika said the bank had ended talks with Morocco’s Banque Centrale Populaire SA on a possible acquisition deal. Banque Centrale Populaire has been linked with taking a stake in the Rwandan bank, according to Moroccan press reports.

Bank of Kigali said in a separate statement its pretax profit rose 5 percent to 26.1 billion francs ($30.50 million) in the first nine months of the year, while net interest income rose 8 percent to 46.1 billion francs compared with the first nine months in 2016.

Total assets rose 28 percent to 761.3 billion francs, the bank said. ($1 = 855.8000 Rwandan francs) (Reporting by Clement Uwiringiyimana; Editing by George Obulutsa and Jane Merriman)

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