By Rosemary Iwuala
The management of Sigma Pensions has said the acquisition of the Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) by entities controlled by Access Corporation (parent company of Access Bank) will position it as the fourth-largest PFA in Nigeria after its proposed merger with First Guarantee Pensions, with its target set on attaining market dominance in the near term.
Dave Uduanu, managing director/CEO, Sigma Pensions, reiterated that the sale of Actis Golf Nigeria Limited (parent company of Sigma Pensions) was based on the firm’s original strategic intent to invest in Sigma Pensions, work with management to achieve a significant transformation and exit after a five/six-year holding period.
Actis Golf is a special purpose vehicle set up by ACTIS Private Equity UK in 2015 to pursue a buy and build strategy within the pension fund industry in Nigeria and the wider African market. Access Corporation intends to continue with the original strategy of Actis Golf as developed by Actis Private Equity.
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Uduanu said the milestone transaction would create a dominant wholly-owned Nigerian PFA well positioned to serve its customers better with huge funds under management and the capacity to invest in critical sectors of the economy like infrastructure, private equity, real estate, mortgage-backed securities and critical SMEs.
“This transaction allows Sigma to become part of the Access Corporation’s ecosystem which has the biggest bank in Nigeria with over 50 million customers. Customers would have all their pensions and financial planning requirements met under one roof. They will also have the benefit of accessing up to 25 percent of their RSA savings to support the purchase of a home under the RSA-mortgage support scheme,” Uduanu said.
“For the staff of Sigma Pensions, this is a huge leap forward as they will be working for one of the biggest financial service companies in Nigeria. And for the country as wholly owned, this will be a success story of an exit by the biggest and best Private Equity Firm in emerging markets, ACTIS PE exiting an investment to the biggest Financial Services Company in Nigeria,” he said.