WINDHOEK, NAMIBIA, March 22, 2001—The
International Finance Corporation will invest N$5.8 million (about US$750,000)
in NIB Namibia (Pty) Limited with the aim of establishing Namibia’s first
full-service merchant bank. NIB Namibia will offer an array of services
to its clients, including corporate finance, project finance, private equity,
investment management, and treasury services. IFC will take a 15
percent equity stake in NIB Namibia and provide secondary capital in the
form of cumulative redeemable debentures.
NIB Namibia is a joint venture among Nedcor Investment Bank Holdings (65
percent), Pamue Investments Corporation (10 percent), Kumwe Investment
Holdings (10 percent), and IFC (15 percent). NIB Holdings, a leading
South African merchant bank, is the project’s main sponsor and strategic
partner. Pamue and Kumwe, two Namibian business groups, will be the
Over the next five years, NIB Namibia intends to transform itself into
a full-service provider of merchant banking services to the Namibian marketplace
and develop the necessary local delivery capacity to operate on a largely
self-sufficient basis. NIB Holdings will support this process through
skills transfer, training, and access to intellectual capital and know-how.
Once successfully established, NIB Holdings expects to replicate
this model in other southern African countries and build a network of delivery
hubs in the region.
While Namibia’s financial sector is well represented by commercial banks,
insurance companies, and asset managers, almost no domestic capacity exists
in the areas of project, corporate, and structured finance to address the
emerging opportunities in infrastructure, commercialization, and privatization
of state assets or the structuring of larger investment projects. In
addition, there is a need for professional services in development finance
and general investment consultancy. Such expertise is currently sourced
from outside Namibia, primarily from South Africa's large investment and
merchant banks. NIB Namibia will play a crucial role in filling this
void in the market.
The project is IFC's second financial services investment in Namibia. In
1998, IFC took a 25 percent equity stake in Namlife, Namibia's first indigenous
life insurance company.
IFC’s Executive Vice President, Peter Woicke, who signed the agreements
on a visit to Windhoek, said the project was an important step in the development
of increased indigenous participation in Namibia’s financial sector. He
added that it would create local delivery capacity in an area that was
previously the domain of the large South African commercial banks.
Chief Executive Officer of NIB Holdings, Dr. Izak Botha, said the project
would provide for a higher quality of service to Namibian clients.
Managing Director of NIB Namibia, Steve Galloway, added that increasing
local capacity in Namibia would speed the development of the country’s
fast-growing financial services sector and help the private and public
sectors work together more harmoniously.
The mission of IFC, part of the World Bank Group, is to promote sustainable
private sector investment in developing countries as a way to reduce poverty
and improve people’s lives. IFC finances private sector investments
in emerging markets, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets,
and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.