JOHANNESBURG, Nov 5 (Reuters) – Four of South Africa’s
biggest banks are owed $53 million by Ellerine, the money-losing
furniture firm that African Bank Investments (Abil) cut
funding to just before the lender collapsed, documents showed.
The debt reflects the extent to which Abil’s failure in
August has rippled across corporate South Africa, knocking
credit ratings, investor confidence and even hurting small
suppliers such as florists and panel beaters.
PRETORIA, Oct 30 (Reuters) – Eighty-one-year-old Sachiko
Asano travelled 8,500 miles to Africa to see jacaranda trees in
bloom, one of hundreds of Japanese inspired by a culture of
flower-viewing to make the trek every year.
“It was a long trip, but I wanted to come and see the
jacarandas while I still can,” said the resident of Japan’s
northern island of Hokkaido after a two-day tour of Pretoria,
known as the “Jacaranda City” for its eruption of purple and
blue in the southern hemisphere spring.
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South African prosecutors will appeal against the culpable homicide verdict and five-year jail sentence passed on Oscar Pistorius last week after public and legal criticism of the judge’s decision to absolve the track star of murder.
The Olympic and Paralympic athlete, whose lower legs were amputated as a baby, killed his girlfriend on Valentine’s Day last year by firing four 9mm rounds into the locked door of a toilet cubicle in what he said was the mistaken belief an intruder was hiding behind it.
JOHANNESBURG, Oct 2 (Reuters) – South Africa’s Nedbank
said on Thursday it will acquire a 20 percent stake in
pan-African lender Ecobank Transnational for $493
million in cash, ending months of speculation it could walk away
from the deal over governance concerns.
The acquisition gives South Africa’s fourth-largest lender
badly needed access to fast-growing sub-Saharan Africa, where it
has lagged behind rivals. But the deal also puts it in the
position of sharing its influence with Ecobank’s other strategic
investor, Qatar National Bank (QNB).
JOHANNESBURG, Aug 28 (Reuters) – South Africa’s Woolworths
Holdings posted a double-digit rise in full-year profit
on Thursday as affluent shoppers kept spending on organic jam
and ostrich steaks despite the weak economy.
Woolworths, a food and clothing retailer similar to
Britain’s Marks and Spencer, is one of the industry’s
few recent strong performers, as most South African consumers
have been suffered under poor economic growth and rising debt.
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – Unemployed South African construction worker Daniel isn’t sure how he fell so deeply in debt. All he knows is that African Bank Investments (ABLJ.J: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), which was bailed out this month, kept offering him money and he kept taking.
“I can’t remember now, I can’t remember each and every cent I spent,” he said. At 62 and with a junior high school education, he admits he doesn’t understand how interest works.
JOHANNESBURG, Aug 20 (Reuters) – Unemployed South African
construction worker Daniel isn’t sure how he fell so deeply in
debt. All he knows is that African Bank Investments,
which was bailed out this month, kept offering him money and he
“I can’t remember now, I can’t remember each and every cent
I spent,” he said. At 62 and with a junior high school
education, he admits he doesn’t understand how interest works.
JOHANNESBURG, Aug 14 (Reuters) – South Africa’s Standard
Bank took an $80 million hit from its exposure to
suspected metal financing fraud in China, wiping out first-half
earnings growth at Africa’s largest lender.
Johannesburg-based Standard Bank, one several global lenders
ensnared by the scandal at the Qingdao port, said on Thursday it
was still unclear if further writedowns would be needed given a
lack of available information from China.
JOHANNESBURG, Aug 11 (Reuters) – Shares in bailed-out South
African lender African Bank Investments (Abil) were
suspended on Monday, as investors shrugged off a financial
meltdown that appeared to pose no wider risk to the banking
The central bank and commercial banks stepped in on Sunday
with a $1.6 billion plan to rescue Abil from a flood of bad
debts mostly racked up on risky payday loans to unsecured
PRETORIA, Aug 10 (Reuters) – South Africa’s central bank
stepped in to rescue unsecured lender African Bank Investments
on Sunday, placing it under external supervision and announcing
plans for a $940 million capital injection underwritten by local
The rescue, which will see the South African Reserve Bank
acquire the lender’s 17-billion-rand ($1.6-billion) bad loan
portfolio, follows an investor exodus from African Bank
earlier this week after it warned of a full-year loss and said
it needed a massive capital raising.