NAIROBI, June 23 Kenya’s central bank said on
Friday it planned to extend the receivership of Imperial Bank by
a year to help finalise a deal with a strategic investor to take
a stake in the bank.
The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) ordered the privately owned
bank to be put into receivership in October 2015 after the board
of the mid-sized lender alerted it to suspected malpractices.
The Imperial Bank receivership rattled confidence in a
financial sector where more than 40 foreign and local banks
operate – especially as it came just two months after the
liquidation of a smaller bank.
“After initial preparations, the formal process will
commence with an invitation for Expressions of Interest from
potential strategic investors, and the bank’s shareholders if
they so wish, in taking an interest in the bank,” the central
bank said in a statement.
“Mindful of the concerns by depositors and the need for the
process to be fully credible to potential strategic investors in
order to maximise the value for depositors, the entire process
is anticipated to be about 48 weeks.”
The central bank had initially hoped to get Imperial Bank
out of receivership by March 2016, but this was delayed after
the regulator said it needed more time for investigations to
determine Imperial’s fate.
(Reporting by George Obulutsa; Editing by Alison Williams)