Home » Business » Afrasia – From Iconic Bank to Financial Washout

AFRASIA Bank Zimbabwe on Tuesday surrendered its operating licence, marking the end of an iconic institution previously known as Kingdom Financial Holdings (KFH) and a poster child of Zimbabwe’s liberalised financial services industry in the 1990s. Below is a timeline charting the bank’s history.

1995: Kingdom Securities Limited (“KSL”) was registered as a Discount House under the Zimbabwe Banking Act (Chapter 24:01). Kingdom Asset Management (Private) Limited (“KAM”), and Kingdom Stockbrokers (Private) Limited (“KSB”), all duly registered as a discount house, asset manager, and member of the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (“ZSE”) respectively.

1997: Kingdom Bank Limited was established as an accepting house under the Banking Act.

1998: KAM was registered as a Manager of Collective Investment Schemes and subsequently commenced the trading of unit trust funds.

1999: Kingdom Securities Holdings Limited merged with DCZ Holdings Limited (registered as a discount house under the Banking Act in 1954) and listed on the ZSE. KSHL’s name was changed to Kingdom Financial Holdings Limited (“KFHL”).

2000: KBL converted its Merchant banking license to that of a commercial bank.

2001: Kingdom initiated regional expansion strategy and acquired 25,1% stake in FDH Financial Holdings (Malawi) (“FDH”). The stake was subsequently increased to the current 38,15%.

2001: The micro finance business was commenced under MicroKing Finance (Private) Limited.

2002: Kingdom Bank Africa Limited (“KBAL”) was licenced by Bank of Botswana as the first offshore bank in the International Financial Services Centre. The Group currently has a combined 35,7% shareholding in KBAL.

2007: Kingdom Financial Holdings Limited merged with Meikles Limited, Tanganda Tea Company Limited and Cotton Printers (Private) Limited to create Kingdom Meikles Africa Limited.

2009: When it became apparent that the anticipated benefits of the merger were unlikely to materialise, the shareholders approved the demerger of KFHL through a structure involving a dividend in specie. The demerger was finally completed in 2011.

2011: KFHL shareholders approved a recapitalization plan involving mainly rights issue and a private placement.

2012: A private placement was completed resulting in AfrAsia Bank Limited of Mauritius owning an ultimate shareholding of 35% of AKZL.

The Group then rebranded to AfrAsia Kingdom Zimbabwe Limited to reflect the co-existence of the AfrAsia and Kingdom brands.

2013: AfrAsia Bank Mauritius takes control of KFH after buying out Chanakira and renamed it AfrAsia Zimbabwe Holdings.

2015: RBZ cancels licence, citing the banking institution is no longer in a safe and sound condition in that the institution is grossly undercapitalised and is facing chronic liquidity challenges.

Source : Zimbabwe Independent

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