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01 June 2020

Charles Russell Speechlys advises Harborough Limited and management team of GHL Bank Plc on the sale of GHL to First National Bank of Ghana

Charles Russell Speechlys has advised Harborough Limited (as the holding company of GHL) and the management team of GHL Bank plc (GHL) on the sale of the bank to First National Bank of Ghana (FNB). The transaction has been approved by the boards of the two banks and has now completed following receipt of the required regulatory approvals.

First National Bank of Ghana (FNB) is a subsidiary of the FirstRand Group, the largest financial institution group by market capitalisation in Africa. GHL, in addition to offering retail and corporate banking products and services in Ghana, is a leading provider of mortgage financing in Ghana, and the transaction demonstrates FNB's and GHL's commitment to growing their operations in the country.

Dominic Adu, Chief Executive Officer of GHL, and the CEO of the combined banks going forward, commented: "The senior management team at GHL have known and worked with Adrian and the wider team at Charles Russell Speechlys for a number of years and always found their knowledge of our sector and wider market excellent. It was natural for us to rely on them for this transaction, which has had its complications, and required a team well versed in African private equity and M&A transactions. We are delighted with the input of Adrian, and Matthew Hobbs in particular, and throughout have been very impressed with the way they guided and advised us. We look forward to working them again in the future."

The Charles Russell Speechlys team was led by Corporate Partner and Head of the firm's Africa Team Adrian Mayer, supported by Corporate Associate Matthew Hobbs, and others including Banking Partner Jon Bond, Employment Legal Director Sara Wilson and Employment Associate Briony Richards.

Adrian commented, "We have advised GHL for nearly 10 years on a wide range of matters, and are delighted to have assisted the senior management team on this transformational deal. Successfully completing this deal further demonstrates our extensive track record and experience of working with clients in both West Africa and across the continent."