Absa, Société Générale partnership expands with pan-African wholesale banking offering

Barclays Africa Rebrands as Absa Group

Societe Generale (BRVM:SGBC) and Absa Group Limited (JSE:ABSP), have partnered in rolling out a commercial agreement and expand their activities through the development of a pan-African wholesale banking offering.

The two banks announced on Friday signing of a memorandum of understanding to launch a pan-African wholesale banking offering to exploit their combined strengths on the continent.

Société Générale CEO Frédéric Oudéa, says that large African companies and multinationals have increasingly sophisticated banking needs. “Joining our forces through this agreement makes perfect sense to accompany the economic development of the continent.”

“The agreement we have entered into should go a long way to enable our clients to do business in Africa regardless of where they want to do business. This is yet another example of how Absa is delivering against our growth strategy through both partnerships and acquisitions where relevant and appropriate,” says Maria Ramos, Absa Group Chief Executive Officer.

Absa is one of Africa’s largest diversified financial services groups. With a presence in 12 countries, primarily in Southern and Eastern Africa**, the bank has strong knowledge of local markets which allows Absa to meet client needs with a full range of local banking solutions.

This partnership will leverage on Societe Generale and Absa’s geographical complementarity and combined strengths to reinforce their expertise and offer a wider range of banking products and services to international and domestic corporate clients and financial institutions with operations in Africa.

Separately, Absa said it would acquire Société Générale’s custody, trustee and derivatives clearing services in South Africa which will include the client portfolio, IT systems and employees dedicated to these activities. The business will be integrated into Absa’s corporate bank.

“For Absa, the acquisition supports our growth strategy in Africa,” said Maria Ramos. “The transaction allows Absa to re-establish a firm foothold in the custody and trustee services market and provides us with the opportunity to expand our offer to corporate clients in South Africa. Our strategic intent is, in time, to provide these services across markets where we have a presence.”