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Barclays rebranding takes shape

Publishing Date : 12 March, 2018

Author : REARABILWE RAMAPHANE

Barclays Africa Group (BAGL) will rebrand and change its name to ABSA Group Limited, a process that will see all Barclays Banks in Africa change names to ABSA; this has been revealed by Barclays Bank of Botswana (BBB) in a statement addressed to its shareholders dated 1st March 2018.


The statement states that due to Barclays PLC (PLC) reduction in shareholding of Barclays Africa Group Limited (BAGL), the Group will change the name subject to regulatory and shareholders’ approval. Barclays Global Group has been the majority shareholders at over 60%, the company announced in 2016 that its shareholding shall be reduced to less that 20% in a bid to concentrate on other emerging global markets specifically the European space after decades of dominating the African market. According to the statement the name change will be effective from the date set out in the amended registration certificate issued by the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission.


“A special resolution to this effect will be included in the Notice of Annual General Meeting to be issued to shareholders of BAGL on 29 March 2018 for the meeting on 15 May 2018,” reveals the statement 
Barclays further reveals that as part of the separation process, an agreement was entered into between Barclays Africa Group Limited and PLC that in South Africa, the term “Member of Barclays” must be removed by 6 June 2018, subject to an additional two-year run off period in respect of cards and the use of the name “Barclays Africa Group Limited” was permitted up to 6 June 2020, provided BAGL announces the intention to change its name on or before 6 June 2018.


The statement further stipulates that the term Barclays brand may only be used in the rest of Africa up to 6 June 2020, subject to an additional two-year run off period in respect of cards. Barclays Bank of Botswana reiterates that the proposed name change will not affect Barclays Africa Group shareholding on its African operations, including Botswana. The Botswana Stock Exchange listed Bank says its customer service delivery remains of high standard and satisfactory to its clientele. “Barclays Bank of Botswana continues to have a clear strategy in Botswana and remains focused on executing that strategy.   BBB will continue to serve its customers as it has done for over 67 years and accordingly advise all stakeholders of all material developments,” reads the statement.


Following the decision by Barclays PLC to lower their stake which was announced in the last quarter of 2016, trading of shares at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and shareholding transfer is nearing completion. Barclays Africa Group says this change in its shareholdings means that the Group is transforming from being part of a global group to a more pan-African entity run by Africans for Africans. In various country to country awareness undertakings the Group reiterated that trickling down of its shares by former parent company Barclays PCL would only effect shareholding change while  services, policies and schemes remains.


The Bank says it views this transformation as a positive change as the bank will now focus on African needs and tailored African preferred policies and schemes to best serve their African clientele. “Our understanding is that Africa as a developing continent needs well crafted banking and financial policies and services to grow its country economies, thus we will better support our Small Medium Enterprises, our countries economic diversification efforts better as a pan African bank than as global entity,” shared one of the executives at a briefing held in Botswana.

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