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Ecobank unveils capital markets, investment arm

Also announces new office in Dubai.

October 5, 2010 2:47 by

Pan-African banking group Ecobank has announced the launch of a new capital markets and investment banking arm.

Ecobank Capital’s services include deal execution, buy-side advisory and market research. The new venture also trades in 16 African currencies, the bank said.

“Our rapid expansion across Middle Africa has necessitated the restructuring of our trade, project and equity finance and syndicated lending businesses,” Ecobank Group CEO Arnold Ekpe said in a statement dated Oct. 4.

Ecobank is present in 30 African countries and has over 11,000 employees. Its parent company is incorporated in Lome, Togo, and it is listed on stock exchanges in Lagos, Accra and Abidjan.

The banking sector in Africa is witnessing fast growth. Last month HSBC announced it was in talks to buy up to 70 percent of South Africa’s Nedbank in a potential $8-billion-plus deal.

Offong Ambah, the head of Ecobank’s new capital arm, said Ecobank’s regional experience and expertise in foreign exchange, equities, debt and commodities underpins the new activity.

“We can provide our corporate, governmental and institutional clients with an integrated service from a uniquely local perspective,” he said.

Last month Ecobank also announced the opening of an office in Dubai, adding to overseas presences in Beijing and Paris.

Ekpe said the expansion is a reflection of the increasing number of African businesses sourcing goods from Dubai and Middle Eastern companies investing across Africa.

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