Elumelu’s firm acquires 70m units of UBA shares

Oluwanifemi Ojo
Oluwanifemi Ojo

A private equity firm, HH Capital, founded by a Nigerian billionaire and the chairman of the Board of Directors of United Bank for Africa, Tony Elumelu has acquired 70 million units of shares of UBA.

According to The Punch, the acquisition was disclosed through a corporate filing made on Wednesday on the Nigerian Exchange Limited.

This follows the accusation by the renowned businessman, Femi Otedola that the UBA chairman had betrayed him on some deals that happened far back in 2008.

The details of the new purchase revealed that HH Capital Limited bought 70,000,000 UBA shares at N8 per unit on the NGX, and the total value of the transaction is N560m.

Elumelu’s latest purchase of 70 million UBA shares has increased his overall stake in the bank.

Meanwhile, Tony Elumelu’s direct and indirect holdings in UBA were indicated in the bank’s 2022 audited financial statements.

According to the statement, Elumelu has 194,669,555 UBA shares under his direct control, while he owns 2,185,934,184 shares indirectly through various companies, including HH Capital Limited, Heirs Holdings Limited, and Heirs Alliance Limited.

Speaking about the claimed backstabbing by Tony Elumelu, Otedola said, “In 2005, while Tony was the Managing Director of Standard Trust Bank, he approached me to get funds to acquire UBA. I enthusiastically gave him $20m, which was N2bn at that time to buy the necessary shares in UBA for the acquisition.

“After a short period of time, the share price moved up and I decided it was a good moment to sell and get out of the bank. However, Tony appealed to me to hold on to the shares as he was convinced that there were future prospects – so I kept the shares.”

“I became chairman of Transcorp Hotel in 2007 with a shareholding of five per cent and unknowingly, Tony gradually started buying shares quietly.

“By the following year in 2008, I went bankrupt in Nigeria. Tony proceeded to take my shares in UBA to service the interest on my loans and he also took over my shares in Africa Finance Corporation, where I was the largest shareholder,” he added

He said, “Shortly after, Albert Okumagba informed me that an American firm wanted to acquire my shares in Transcorp, which I then agreed to sell. However, this supposed American firm turned out to be Tony Elumelu. The revelation of this prompted me to resign as chairman of the hotel.”

He further stated, “Years later in 2012, Tony said he wanted to see me so we met in my office where I had previously had a meeting with foreign investors who had not yet departed the premises. Curious to know, he asked what sort of meeting I had had and I disclosed that I wanted to go into the power business, specifically Ughelli Power Plant. Tony quietly went ahead to bid for Ughelli and he outbid me by offering to buy the plant for $300m.”

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