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Updated: Efritin retrenches all staff in Nigeria, moves abroad

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Earlier today we reported that Efritin had shutdown operation in Nigeria amidst allegations of fraud, mismanagement, lawsuits and the ensuing settlements. But the parent company Saltside Technologies was swift to deny the allegation claiming that it was a false claim.

According to a mail sent to Naijanews. com, by Saltside Technologies CEO Nils Hammar, Efritin.com retrenched all its employees in Nigeria yesterday. But, the site continues as before. It is now managed at arm’s length by a team outside the country.

In the early hours of Tuesday, 10th January, 2016, it was reported here that an anonymous source confirmed the folding up of the company. It is worthy to note that in November, Techmoran’s Exclusive details the allegations levied against Zakaria Hersi, Somali national and former Managing Director.

Gbenro Dara, CEO at Efritin Nigeria

Zakaria Hersi had been accused of theft, mismanagement, and doctoring invoices. Some anonymous senior management staff claimed that his(Zakari’s) mismanagement heralded the end for Efritin, as ten lawsuits in Nigeria with settlements reaching N20 million and the inability to raise further funding to scale left current CEO, Gbenro Dara, in a lurch.

With job losses even at the central level in Dubai, Efritin may well and truly be out.

Meanwhile, the company has denied reports about fraud describing it as fake accusations of fraud.

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FBN Holdings Speaks On Femi Otedola’s Acquisition Of First Bank

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Following yesterday’s rife report that billionaire investor, Femi Otedola, has acquired the majority shares of First Bank Nigeria Limited, FBN Holdings Plc has come out to state that it has not received the notification of such acquisitions.

Otedola was said to have been acquiring the shares of the bank through a vehicle, Calvados Global Services Limited. It is also likely that there could be other vehicles associated with Otedola who may have also been mopping up shares.

Naija News understands that FBNH currently has 34.7 billion of its shares floating freely meaning it is held by diverse shareholders. This makes the shares easy to acquire on the stock exchange.

Otedola, through his proxies and investing vehicles, reportedly owns over five per cent of the bank, setting himself up to be the single largest shareholder of the bank. Even as it was said that the Nigerian Stock Exchange would be making an official announcement would be coming in the days ahead.

FBN Holdings Plc, in a statement signed by its Company Secretary, Seyi Kosoko, and filed with the Nigerian Exchange Limited on Friday, stated that its shares are publicly traded, adding that the sale and acquisition of shares is expected in the normal course of business.

The holding company for First Bank of Nigeria Limited said, “The attention of FBN Holdings Plc has been drawn to media reports today (Friday) that a certain individual has acquired significant shareholding interest in FBN Holdings Plc.

“As a listed company, the shares of FBN Holdings are publicly traded, and sale and acquisition of shares is expected in the normal course of business. We operate in a regulated environment, which requires notification of significant shareholding by shareholders to the company, where shares are held in different vehicles, further to which the company will notify the regulators and the public as appropriate.

“The company is yet to receive any notification from the individual mentioned in the media report, of such acquisitions,” the statement concluded.

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IPMAN Identifies ‘Cause’ Of Increase In Fuel Price In Nigeria

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Private depot owners have been blamed for the increase in the prices of petroleum products in Nigeria.

In a statement released on Friday, the Kano State chapter of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, alleged that some private owners are independently adding to the sale price of the products.

IPMAN said it was necessary to inform the Federal Government of the development in order for the government and the public not to criticise its members of the unstable price of the Petroleum Motor Spirit.

The State chairman of IPMAN, Alhaji Bashir Danmallam, revealed that the organization have found out that some of the private depot owners had increased the price of fuel from N148 per litre to between N153 and N155 per litre since last week.

The statement read, “Some private depot owners are trying to sabotage the Federal Government by unilaterally increasing their prices even though the government has not raised the fuel pump price.

“We’re equally calling on the Management of the NNPC to investigate the issue as some of the private depot owners have since Friday last week increased the price from N148 per litre to between N153 and N155 per litre. We know it is only the Federal Government that imports fuel into the country.

“As I’m talking to you, private depot owners in Warri, Calabar Lagos and Oghara in Delta State have increased their prices. We hope the management of the NNPC will investigate and intervene.”

Meanwhile, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has said a huge price difference in the pump price of petrol in Nigeria and neighbouring countries is fuelling the smuggling of petroleum products, Naija News reports.

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Femi Otedola Reportedly Takes Over First Bank With ₦30bn

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Nigerian billionaire businessman and investor, Femi Otedola, on Friday, reportedly took over First Bank of Nigeria Plc.

According to The Street Journal, Otedola took over the bank with the acquisition of about ₦30 billion worth of shares, making him the single largest shareholder of the bank.

Otedola, being the largest shareholder, holds the highest voting shares, giving him power to dictate the direction of the bank through his voting power.

Recall that Femi Otedola had in 2019 divested his 75% direct and indirect share holding in Forte Oil, via a merger of his company Zenon Oil and former African Petroleum.

First Bank headquarters

This act made many wondered why he made such a decision especially because of the lucrative nature of the oil and gas sector.

The billionaire had expressed interest in going into refining and petrochemicals as well as investing in the real estate and financial sector.

It was gathered that Otedola decided to take over First Bank Nigeria because of the internal crisis rocking the bank.

Recall that the leadership crisis rocking the bank led to the Central Bank of Nigeria sacking both the chairman of the bank, Ibukun Awosika and Obafemi Otudeko, the chairman of FBN Holdings.

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