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Nedbank Namibia MD excited about 2015 prospects

Nedbank Namibia Managing Director Lionel Matthews

Nedbank Namibia’s Managing Director Lionel Matthews said he is excited by the bright prospects for Nedbank Namibia in 2015. In an interview with the Economist, Matthews stated that the bank is working hard to become the most admired bank in the country. “At Nedbank, we aim to be the most admired bank in our country and this is the admiration that we seek from our staff, clients, shareholders, regulators and the communities which we are duty-bound to serve.

In my view we have been making fantastic strides in our journey to achieve this vision and the efforts by Nedbank staff to honour our service promise to our clients have been recognized during the inaugural Namibia Customer Service Awards when Nedbank Namibia came up trumps in the banking sector category.” He said service excellence to our clients will continue to be a key focus area for our bank in 2015, in line with our service promise to listen to our clients, understand their requirements and then deliver emphatically on their expectations. He highlighted that the bank is particularly excited about the new core banking platform that its teams are in the process of implementing, with the go-live date taking place during the first quarter of 2015. The new operating system is recognised as one of the leading banking platforms in the world and will allow Nedbank Namibia to improve the value proposition and overall experience for its clients.  “We will be able to provide even greater banking convenience to our clients, with capacity in mobile banking within our reach. Finally, during the course of 2015, we will be introducing a series of tailor-made bundled product offerings to our clients, as well as a range of innovative concepts, designed to greatly enhance our clients’ banking experiences,” he said. He added that another key focus area will also be to respond better and more appropriately to SMEs, in terms of which the bank aims to offer a dedicated service to this important market segment Said Matthews, “2014 has been a year of pleasing growth for Nedbank Namibia following strong financial performance and dedication from our staff, although it hasn’t been without its own challenges. It has also been a year that has seen us opening four new branches in various locations throughout the country in Okahandja, Ongwediva. The Grove Mall and Westlane Shopping Centre in Pionierspark, Windhoek.” “This means that we opened six branches in the space of just over 12 months, following the opening of branches in Prosperita and Otjiwarongo in December 2013,” he added. “I am particularly encouraged by the fact that we have managed to fill all positions on the Executive Committee in 2014 with exceptionally capable, resourceful and vibrant Namibians. I remain deeply excited by the bright prospects for Nedbank Namibia in 2015, backed by a highly motivated staff complement, great shareholders’ support and an increasingly strong financial performance,” he said. Matthews said the bank sets itself challenging, and even ambitious, targets to achieve within the scope of its three-year strategic objectives, with several initiatives underway focusing on five broad focus areas: building enduring relationships in the retail banking space; remaining a relevant, value-adding partner for our clients in the wholesale banking environment; maximising opportunities in the operations and risk area; integrating functions in one core banking platform; and empowering and motivating our staff from both a people and change management perspective. “At Nedbank we have a set of ‘Deep Green Aspirations’ that will continue to drive our service efforts. In summation, we aspire to create a great place to work, bank in invest; we aim to be world class in managing risk; while our intention has always been to be a green and caring bank and have a broader impact in society. We continue to operate in a competitive operating environment, which requires one to always remain relevant,” said Matthews. “However, this challenge does provide exciting opportunities to continue to evolve and innovate, which in the end is of great benefit to our clients and the Namibian public at large. Various strategy and management models make reference to the challenges that new entrants to the market will pose to the current establishment, and this is no different for the banking industry. Nedbank Namibia as I’m sure the other commercial banks will also do will continue to keep a watchful eye on the new banks that intend setting up operations in Namibia, but principal focus will always be to continuously evaluate our systems, procedures and operations in order to ensure that we always provide our clients with levels of service that are competitive, and which they unquestionably deserve,” he explained. He said the following areas will continue to receive the banks focused attention, People Focus Client Centricity, Risk Management, Operational Simplicity Technology and Innovation Community Development & Environmental Sustainability.

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Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia

Promotion

20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.