Is Barclays Africa (BAGL) destined to become an orphan with no parent company? It has been five months since the book build in which UK lender Barclays Plc disposed of 12,2% of its holding in BAGL to a wide range of shareholders (see Financial Mail May 12-May 18). That was the easy part, and with 50.1% of the shares, Barclays is just a handful of shares away from relinquishing control. BAGL deputy CEO David Hodnett says the process has not taken longer than expected, as there was always a two- to three-year horizon for completion. BAGL and Barclays Plc have the complex task of ensuring that the operational separation of the two groups is orderly and, of course, that it preserves value for both sets of shareholders. Barclays was at least able to give some news to impatient shareholders and analysts last week. It has sold its 150-year-old Egyptian subsidiary to Attijariwafa Bank, the largest bank in Morocco, for US$500m. Barclays Plc and the then Absa could not agree on the right comm...

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