The real owners of Union Bank after the takeover of Titan Trust

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Jhe accomplishment this week of a sale and purchase of shares the handing over of 93.4% of the shares held by a group of senior investors in the century-old Union Bank of Nigeria Plc to Titan Trust Bank Limited means that the bank is now owned by the d investment focused on emerging markets Limited tropical general investments (TGI), the parent company of the digital bank.

The investment company, based in Lagos with offices in Dublin, Ireland, has interests in pharmaceuticals, consumer products, agricultural inputs, home care products and industrial chemicals.

Trained approximately three and a half years agoTitan Trust obtained a national banking license to operate in Nigeria and started off quietly although it is positioning itself as a challenger bank.

Based in Dubai Vink Companya subsidiary of TGI, serves as group business unitand bears the name of Cornelius G Vink, the president, founder and owner from TGI.

After the takeover of Union Bank, the bank appointed new directors to its board of directors and a new managing director. The new CEO is the managing director of Titan Trust Bank, Mudassir Amray, while the directors are Farouk Gumel, Andrew Ojel, Abubakar Mohammed and Lawrence Mackombo. Mr. Gumel is the chairman.

Here are the profiles of the main shareholders of TGI, the new owners of Union Bank.

Cornelius G Vink Credit: TGI group website

CORNELIUS G VINK

A citizen of the Netherlands, Mr. Vink operated in Nigeria as early as the 1980s and received the national honor of Member of the Federal Republic (MFR), the late President Umaru Yar’Adua.

He set up TGI in 1991 with an obscure small business, Comart Nigeria Limited, in a corner of Lagos, specializing in importing chemicals into the country.

Organic growth in a decade and a year has expanded the company’s subsidiaries to 15, with some of the companies including Chi Limited, West Africa Cotton Company (WACOT), Chi Farms, TGI Distri Limited, Chi Pharma, ORC Fishing, Kaizen Properties, Master Marine, WACOT Rice, Fludor Benin SA, Fludor Ghana and West Africa Soy Industries Limited. TGI owns more than a hundred brands in different sectors.

Mr Vink sold a minority stake equivalent to a 40% stake in Chi Limited, maker of popular brands such as CapriSun and Chivita, for $240 million to Coca Cola in 2016.

“We have been approached by many prestigious global companies and we have decided to enter into an agreement with the largest of them,” said the billionaire at the time.

He would later sell the remaining 60% stake to the same acquirer, for a total transaction of $1 billion.

“I… need to elaborate more on the ownership structure of Titan. The bank is 85% owned by Vink Corporation – a foreign company,” said Tunde Lemo, chairman of Titan Trust after the announcement of the stock purchase in December.

“Local shareholders own the balance, and ownership is dispersed. My shareholding is therefore very small and insignificant. I just lead,” he added.

According to the lender’s 2020 audited annual report seen by PREMIUM TIMES, Luxis International DMCC and Magna International DMCC, both part of Vink Corporation DMCC, own 48.09% and 37.39% of Titan Trust’s shares, or 85, respectively. 5% percent.

AMINU YARO

Mr. Yaro, a northern business magnate, owns 9.07% of Titan Trust’s 58.4 million common shares.

Lemo mower
Lemo mower

BABATUNDE LEMO

M Lemo, former deputy governor of operations and chief executive of the central bank of Nigeria, chairs the board of directors of Titan’s Trust Bank. He is also currently the chairman of fintech powerhouse Flutterwave.
Mr. Lemo, born in 1959, graduated with a first class degree in accounting in 1984 from the University of Nigeria Nsukka. He started at Arthur Anderson & Co in 1985 and would years later become chairman of the Federal Highways Maintenance Agency.

A member of the Institute of Chartered Accountant of Nigeria and the Chartered Institute of Bankers, Lemo took office in 2004 as Director and Chairman of Abuja Securities and Commodities Exchange Plc. He was a former managing director of Wema Bank.

Mr. Lemo owns a 0.9% stake in Titan Trust Bank, or 529,970 shares.

Andrew Chukwudi Ojei CREDIT: Titan Trust Bank
Andrew Chukwudi Ojei [PHOTO CREDIT: Titan Trust Bank]

ANDREW CHUKWUDI OJEI

Mr. Ojei, non-executive director of the bank, is a former executive director of Zenith Bank. He helped Zenith Bank establish its first foreign subsidiary in Ghana, later becoming the Managing Director of the Ghanaian operation.

He graduated in Accounting from the University of Lagos. A fellow and board member of the Institute of Credit Administration of Nigeria, Ojei’s interests span IT and real estate. Ojei has taken courses at Harvard Business School, Wharton Philadelphia and San Francisco as well as the Advanced Management Program at INSEAD France.

He was appointed non-executive director of Union Bank.

Mr. Ojei holds a 0.9% stake in Titan Trust Bank.


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