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Imperial Bank a step closer to investor deal

 Imperial Bank depositors protest at the lender’s headquarters on Westlands Road in Nairobi last October. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Imperial Bank depositors protest at the lender’s headquarters on Westlands Road in Nairobi last October. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Central Bank (CBK) and the Kenya Deposit Insurance Corporation (KDIC) say they have shortlisted investors to buy a stake in the collapsed Imperial Bank Ltd (IBL).

The three possible buyers were chosen from a shortlist of undisclosed investors who had shown interest in the bidding process between September 8 and 29.

“The shortlisted investors were determined using appropriate and objective criteria based on, inter alia, regulatory imperatives and prudential guidelines which will ensure a speedy and optimal recovery for depositors, creditors and other stakeholders of IBLR,” CBK and KDIC said in a joint statement on Friday

The Expression of Interest marked the start of a complex process which will result in selling off substantial stake in IBL in June 2018.

The mid-tier lender was closed and put in receivership initially for year on October 2015 because of “unsafe and unsound business conditions to transact business”.

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The regulators say they were “mindful of seeking to preserve and develop a sound and innovative banking system in Kenya” in their selection of possible buyers.

The shortlisted investors will now have access to confidential information, do their own due diligence and be taken on site visits of IBL’s assets between this month and January 15 when they are expected to submit non-binding bids.

IBL went under with an estimated Sh87 billion in customers' deposits owing to an elaborate Sh34 billion fraudulent loan scheme that was brought to the attention of the regulator by the lender’s board, resulting in its closure.
The depositors were allowed access to up to Sh1.5 million.

Mid-tier NIC Bank #ticker:NIC in May wound up its consultancy role at IBL where it was tasked with separating the "good bank" from the "bad bank" in a legal arrangement, a process technically referred to as “exclusion and transfer process.”

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