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Skye Bank Loses Operating Licence as Polaris Bank Takes Over

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Jide Afolabi

Skye Bank Plc has lost its operating licence with immediate effect as the nation’s apex bank, the Central Bank of Nigeria has revoked its operating licence.

The CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, disclosed this during a press briefing in Lagos today, Friday.

He said that Skye Bank would now be taken over by Polaris Bank, which would take over all the assets and liabilities of the defunct entity.

Emefiele said the decision had been reached following the inability of the owners of the bank to shore up the capital of the distressed bank which had earlier received a N350 billion intervention in July 2016.

“Skye Bank requires urgent recapitalization as it can no longer continue to live on borrowed times with indefinite liquidity support from the CBN.

“We have decided to establish a bridge bank, Polaris Bank, to assume the assets and liabilities of Skye Bank.

“The strategy is for AMCON to capitalise the bridge bank and begin the process of sourcing investors to buy out AMCON.

“By this decision, the licence of Skye Bank is hereby revoked,” he said.

Meanwhile, the management of the distressed Skye Bank would be retained to continue to manage the newly licenced Polaris Bank.

According to the CBN governor, given the good performance of the board and management, the CBN shall retain them.

The apex bank has also suspended sales of the distressed bank’s shares until discussions are concluded.

Emefiele said the bank took a regulatory action on Skye Bank Nigeria Plc on July 4, 2016,

He said the action led to the resignation of the chairman, all non-executive directors on the board as well as the managing director, deputy managing director, and the two longest-serving executive directors on the management team.

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