NSSA to dispose of FML, Turnall stakes

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HARARE – The National Social Security Authority is set to dispose part of its shareholding in First Mutual Holdings Limited and to divest from Turnall Holdings as part of its investment refocus strategy which favours impact investments and offshore investments. 

NSSA holds 66.22% in First Mutual and is now inviting interested investors to submit expressions of interest for 31.22% stake in the insurance company. This is part of the insurance cluster consolidation strategy, which was started during the time of then chairman Robin Vela and which aimed to create a regional insurance powerhouse.

NSSA will keep a majority 35% in the group in compliance with Zimbabwe Stock Exchange and IPEC requirements.

Phase One of the insurance cluster consolidation was initiated in 2017 and involved the merging of short term insurer NicozDiamond into First Mutual. The transaction, which was motivated by talks with a South African insurance giant at that time, helped strengthen First Mutual’s short term insurance business and solidified its market share.

The second phase was implemented last year after NSSA increased its shareholding in Zimre Holdings through a share swap deal.

According to general manager Arthur Manase, the final phase of the insurance consolidation and refocus strategy will bring in a strategic alliance partner that is capable of helping First Mutual in its next phase of growth.

First Mutual has seen increased trading since last year right up till yesterday from a well-known local buyer. Proposals from interested parties for the 31.22% stake should be submitted to the general manager’s office by January 31, 2021.

NSSA is also looking at consolidating its banking cluster by creating a strategiac alliance for its investment in the National Building Society. This comes after its divestiture from First Capital Bank and ZB Financial Holdings. The strategic partner is expected to broaden NBS’ product offering and enhance its capacity to deliver on affordable housing.

Manase said the NSSA board and its principals have approved the disposal of NSSA’s entire shareholding of 32.55% in Turnall as part of efforts to optimise its investment portfolio. Proceeds of the disposal are earmarked for strategic foreign currency generating investments.

Both proposals for NBS and Turnall stakes should be sent to the general manager’s office by January 31, 2021.