Dar es salaam.
Barclays Africa Group is in discussions with the Bank of Tanzania to merge its two business units in the country.
Mr David Hodnett, the Barclays Africa Group Ltd (BAGL) deputy chief executive, told The EastAfrican, Daily Monitor’s sister newspaper, that the bank intends to combine the operations of its branded unit with those of the National Bank of Commerce (NBC).
“There is still significant work required to ensure the merger goes through so it is too early to make further comment. For now, NBC and Barclays Bank Tanzania continue to operate as two separate and independent entities, with separate boards and management teams,” Mr Hodnett said.
The merger will be subject to approvals by Bank of Tanzania, and the country’s Fair Competition Commission. Mr Hodnett did not give a timeline for the merger but it is expected to happen within the three years that the bank has given itself to reduce its interests in Africa, which are owned through BAGL.
Mr Hodnett said merging the Tanzania units would improve the balance sheet of the merged bank, giving it a competitive edge in big ticket transactions.
Barclays Tanzania managing director Kihara Maina, however, indicated the merger was on the cards even before the parent company decided to reduce its 63.8 per cent stake in BAGL in order to reduce the taxation exposure in the UK.
BAGL serves more than 769,000 customers in Kenya, 561,000 in Tanzania and 136,000 in Uganda.
about the bank
Barclay Tanzania is wholly owned by Barclays Africa Group Ltd , and boasts of more than 70,000 customers, with 22 branches while NBC has more than 50,000 customers, 52 branches and has been in operations since 1967.