Investees | Togo | Ecobank
Ecobank Transnational Incorporated and its 33 banking subsidiaries provide retail, corporate, and investment banking services in Sub-Saharan Africa and internationally. The company was founded in 1985 and is headquartered in Lomé, Togo. ETI is listed on three stock exchanges in West Africa, namely the BRVM, the Ghana Stock Exchange, and the Nigerian Stock Exchange.

Our initial stake of 14.1% in ETI was acquired from IFC and investment funds (Africa Capitalization Fund, IFC ALAC Holding Company II, and IFC (Equity) Capitalization Fund) managed by IFC Asset Management Company on 26 August 2019.
Country Overview

SSA refers to the region of the African continent located south of the Sahara Desert. It encompasses 48 countries with a population of approximately 1.1 billion people representing diverse ethnic groups, languages, and cultures. SSA is rich in natural resources, including oil, minerals, and fertile land. However, the region faces numerous challenges, such as poverty, inequality, political instability, and conflicts, which have impeded its economic and social development.

The economic growth rate of SSA is projected to rebound to 3.4% in 2021 after contracting by 1.9% in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The average inflation rate in SSA was 9.8% in 2020, up from 8.1% in 2019. However, it is expected to moderate to 8.1% in 2021. Foreign direct investment (FDI) in SSA declined to USD 29bn in 2020 due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, which rebounded to USD 73bn in 2021. The average debt-to-GDP ratio for SSA is expected to increase from 58.7% in 2020 to 64.9% in 2021 due to the impact of the pandemic on public finances. The unemployment rate in SSA was 7.9% in 2020, but it is expected to rise to 8.5% in 2021 due to the impact of the pandemic on the job market.

The confluence of higher global interest rates, elevated sovereign debt spreads, and exchange rate depreciations, among other factors, has created a funding squeeze for many countries in SSA. This challenge comes on top of policy struggles from the ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic and the cost-of-living crisis. Reflecting these considerations, economic activity in the region will remain subdued in 2023, with growth at 3.6% before rebounding to 4.2% in 2024, predicated on a global recovery, subsiding inflation, and the winding down of monetary policy tightening.

Banking Sector Overview

ETI is a top three bank in 14 African countries. The banking sector in SSA is diverse, with a mix of local and international banks operating in the region. The total assets of banks in Sub-Saharan Africa were estimated to be around USD 2.9tn in 2020, with South Africa, Nigeria, and Kenya being the largest markets. The use of mobile money has grown rapidly in SSA, with Kenya’s M-PESA being one of the most successful mobile money platforms in the world. Mobile money has helped increase financial inclusion by allowing people to access banking services through mobile phones. Despite the growth of mobile money, access to formal banking services still needs to be improved in many parts of SSA.

According to the World Bank, only 43% of adults in SSA have a bank account, compared to the global average of 69%. The use of fintech is on the rise, with startups developing innovative solutions to address the challenges of financial inclusion and access to finance.

The banking sector in SSA is regulated by central banks in each country. The regulatory environment varies from country to country, but the region has a trend toward greater regulation and supervision.