KCB Group Plc has signed an agreement to acquire 85 percent of shares in Trust Merchant Bank (TMB) in DR Congo. The terms of the agreement indicate that KCB will acquire the shares by the end of September, and shareholders will continue to hold the balance shares for two years, after which KCB will completely own the bank, according to their statement. “KCB will pay a cash consideration for the shares determined based on the net asset value of TMB at the completion of the proposed transaction, and using a price to book multiple of 1.49,” it read. Andrew Wambari Kairu, KCB Group Chairman, said this is part of their strategy to tap into opportunities of new growth while investing in and maximising returns from the Group’s existing businesses. “It gives us strong headroom to accelerate our growth ambitions to deliver better value for our shareholders and to bolster the push for deeper financial inclusion and socio-economic transformation in Africa and beyond.” The Congolese bank acquisition comes after the Kenyan bank bought Banque Populaire du Rwanda (BPR) in May this year, which made it the second-largest bank in Rwanda with an asset base of Rwf648 billion, and a network of 154 branches. It is expected to complement the bank’s ambition to expand in the region with an asset base of $12.6 billion which will play a critical role to strengthen the group’s retail and corporate banking franchise. Robert Levy, TMB Chairman, said: “We believe that by combining our local knowledge and standing with the size and expertise of KCB Group, we should be able to increase market share and shareholder value through unlocking our synergies and business opportunities.” TMB is one of the largest banks in DR Congo with $1.5 billion in total assets. It has over 110 branches and numerous agency banking outlets in the country.