Angola’s Banco Millennium Joins Bourse to Diversify Investments

Banco Millennium Angola SA, the southwest African country’s sixth-largest bank by assets, said it joined Angola’s stock exchange to expand its investments.

Millennium will continue to invest in Angolan public debt in which it holds a “significant proportion” of its assets as Africa’s second-largest crude producer attempts to raise $10 billion this year through bonds, treasuries or loans for infrastructure projects, Chairman Antonio Gaioso Henriques said in an e-mailed reply to questions on Thursday.

The bank’s experience showed it’s “almost mandatory to have outstanding performance in the debt and stock market,” Henriques said. “It will create an opportunity to diversify investments, for us to issue debt directly, or for customers to do that with our support.”

Millennium, which was started in 1993 and is 50.1 percent-owned by Portugal’s Banco Comercial Portugues SA, joined the Bolsa de Divida e Valores de Angola on Tuesday. Banco Investimentos de Angola, the country’s largest lender by assets, and Banco de Fomento Angola are the only other members of the exchange so far. Financial institutions in Africa’s third-largest economy began trading government debt in December. Corporate bond and stock sales are to start by the end of this year.

The bank’s 2014 profit rose 27.6 percent to 6.68 billion kwanzas ($60.8 million) from the previous year as lending climbed 45 percent to 125.5 billion kwanzas, Henriques said.

Millennium intends to add six branches this year for a total of 106 and spend $50 million on network and technology, Henriques said. The company, which is present in Mozambique, doesn’t plan to expand to other countries or buy one of Angola’s 22 other banks, he said.

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