Twelve parties, including local and foreign banks, have expressed interest in taking a stake in Kenya’s Chase Bank, the central bank said late on Tuesday.
Regulators placed the mid-sized lender under receivership in April 2016 after an unexplained loss of billions of Kenyan shillings. The Kenyan bank is not associated with JP Morgan Chase & Co.
The central bank invited expressions of interest in the Chase Bank stake at the end of March. The applicants included three Kenyan banks, four foreign lenders and other parties, it said.
It said it had short-listed an unspecified number of applicants to move to the next stage.
“Short-listed investors will be granted access to comprehensive confidential data that will allow them to develop a formal proposal for taking an equity interest,” the central bank said in a statement.
They must submit formal bids by June 9.
Chase is in the hands of the Kenya Deposit Insurance Corporation (KDIC), a state body that protects depositors in case of a bank failure. The central bank wants to find a strategic investor for Chase but has not specified what size stake it will sell.
The temporary closure of Chase, followed the closure of another mid-sized lender, Imperial Bank, and smaller lender Dubai Bank Kenya. The string of closures knocked confidence in Kenya’s banking sector, which has also seen a jump in bad debts.
(Reporting by Duncan Miriri; Editing by Katharine Houreld and Eric Meijer