On 30th July, 2012, NICO Holdings Limited applied to the Commission for authorisation of the acquisition of 49% stake in NIKO African Investment Limited owned by NICO Holdings Limited (NICO) to Santam Limited of South Africa. NICO Holdings Limited was a holding company whose business extends to financial service provision such as banking, short term insurances, pension administration, asset management and information technology. The applicants owned 100% shares in its subsidiary, NIKO African Investment Company, domiciled in Mauritius.
Under the transaction, first step was the transferring of shares held by NICO Holdings in its subsidiaries namely NICO General Malawi, NICO Zambia, NIKO Uganda, NIKO Tanzania and SFG Zimbabwe to NIKO African Investment Company.
The second stage, involved the selling of 49% shares in NICO Holdings owned in NIKO African Investments to Santam Limited. After the transaction NICO Holdings would remain with 51% controlling shares. On the other hand, Santam Limited, a subsidiary of Sanlam Limited, is engaged in short term insurances in South Africa.
An assessment conducted by the Commission showed that the transaction was not likely to lead to substantial lessening of competition in the relevant market. Instead, the transaction would assist NICO Holdings Limited to acquire technical competencies and skills from Santam Limited. On that account, the Commission authorized the transaction.