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Diamond’s Atlas Mara Seeks $400 Million in Share Sale

Atlas Merchant Capital CEO Robert Diamond
Robert Diamond, who quit Barclays Plc in July 2012 after the British bank admitted rigging global interest rates, and Ugandan entrepreneur Anish Thakkar raised $325 million for the venture in an initial public offering last year. Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg

(Corrects spelling of first name in third paragraph.)

May 14 (Bloomberg) -- Atlas Mara Co-Nvest Ltd., the investment firm backed by former Barclays Plc Chief Executive Officer Robert Diamond, disclosed plans for a share sale that would raise about $400 million for future acquisitions.

The company will sell 36.5 million shares for $11 apiece to investors, Atlas Mara said in a statement yesterday.

Diamond, who quit Barclays in July 2012 after the British bank admitted rigging global interest rates, and Ugandan entrepreneur Ashish Thakkar raised $325 million for the venture in an initial public offering last year. They committed $20 million each of their own money to the company, which lists an address in Tortola, British Virgin Islands and has said it wants to focus on Africa.

The executives are targeting a region where a third of the economies are expanding at more than 6 percent, according to the World Bank. In March, Atlas Mara agreed to buy BancABC, which offers financial services in Botswana, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe, and said it will use the company as a springboard for further acquisitions.

Diamond last month hired former Barclays colleague John Vitalo as Atlas Mara’s CEO. Vitalo had been head of the London-based bank’s operations in the Middle East and North Africa since 2009.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ambereen Choudhury in London at achoudhury@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Edward Evans at eevans3@bloomberg.net

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