Absa is not prepared just to wait on its local subsidiaries to deliver growth following a preliminary announcement that will see it partner with French banking conglomerate Société Générale in courting multinational companies active in Africa. The two banks announced on Friday they had signed a memorandum of understanding to launch a pan-African wholesale banking offering to exploit their combined strengths on the continent. The agreement is a precursor to a more comprehensive commercial agreement they intend to conclude. “The agreement we have entered into should go a long way to enable our clients to do business in Africa regardless of where they want to do business,” says Maria Ramos, CEO of Absa.

Société Générale CEO Frédéric Oudéa, says that large African companies and multinationals have increasingly sophisticated banking needs. “Joining our forces through this agreement makes perfect sense to accompany the economic development of the continent.” It is another sign the w...

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