October 11, 2022

Rwanda’s Sovereign Fund Buys into COMESA Bank

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Rwanda’s sovereign wealth fund the Agaciro Development Fund (AgDF) has invested over USD 8 million in the capital stock of the Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (TDB), becoming its latest institutional shareholder.

TDB is formerly PTA bank, which is the financial arm of the regional grouping COMESA. It is headquartered in Burundi.

In 2013, TDB introduced Class B shares to mobilize capital from institutional investors. This asset class has drawn a lot of interest from investors because of the Bank’s consistent capital growth, impact, and solid profit base.

TDB’s net asset value has grown to USD 13,846 as of 2021, at a 5-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of about 7%, and its dividend yield has averaged about 3% over the past 5 years. Since its inception, close to 258 million has been invested in the Class B shares by institutional investors.

The Bank’s shareholding comprises 23 member states, two non-regional members countries, and with Agaciro Development Fund,19 institutional shareholders.

TDB Group President Emeritus and Managing Director Admassu Tadesse said “We salute Agaciro Development Fund as the first sovereign wealth fund to invest in TDB Group equity capital. This investment illustrates the growing interest and confidence of institutional investors in TDB’s opportunities. We are proud to be able to continue attracting and making African capital work for Africa’s development, while delivering competitive returns.”

Agaciro Development Fund Chief Executive Officer Gilbert Nyatanyi, “Since its inception, Agaciro has principally been reliant on receiving voluntary contributions from Rwandans and friends of Rwanda. With the recent phasing out of the contributions Agaciro is rebalancing and diversifying its investments be it in terms of asset classes as geographically in order to further grow the fund with return on investments. Investing in TDB fits perfectly into this approach.” 

Agaciro joins a group of 18 other institutional investors from Africa and the rest of the world, mainly Europe and Asia, which include pension funds, insurance companies, development finance institutions, special funds and now, a sovereign wealth fund. With an estimate of over USD 600 billion in pension fund assets in Africa, organizations like RSSB and Agaciro Development Fund have the opportunity to diversify their portfolios by investing in Class B shares. As TDB expands its geographic footprint, it remains committed to providing innovative financing solutions, crowding in institutional capital and promoting integrated sustainable development for the region.

By the end of 2021, Agaciro has grown to ~ USD 250,000,000, including fixed income investments (Treasury Bonds, corporate bonds, commercials papers, term deposits, …) and equity investments in 30 companies.

TDB bank has been instrumental in growth of RwandAir, the national carrier, financing the acquisition of two aircraft.

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