The Independent (Kampala)

15 December 2012

Uganda: Umeme Now Ready to List in Kenya

Photo: Rachel Mabala/Monitor
Umeme.

Umeme Limited, Uganda's sole power distributor, has won regulatory approval to list its shares on the Kenyan stock exchange in a bid to improve trading in its stock.

The cross-listing of all 1.62 million Umeme shares on the Nairobi Securities Exchange will contribute to the goal of the five-nation East African Community (EAC) common market to integrate their financial markets.

The EAC comprises Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi.

The Nairobi Securities Exchange is the largest and most liquid stock market in the EAC, providing better trading opportunities for Umeme's shareholders, 46 percent of which are foreigners.

Several Kenyan firms like Kenya Commercial Bank, East African Breweries and Kenya Airways have cross-listed their shares on the Tanzanian and Ugandan markets.

Umeme, which completed its initial public offering last month, will be the first EAC firm to cross-list in Nairobi, after winning approval from the Kenyan market regulator on Dec. 13.

Officials said the Umeme Initial Public Offering which closed on Nov. 7 in Uganda was oversubscribed by over 36% by all categories of investors. They [officials] from Stanbic bank Uganda-the transaction advisor, African Alliance Uganda-the lead sponsoring broker said more than the 622, 378, 000 shares on offer were applied for by investors in Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, and internationally.

They said there were over 4, 300 retail applications in total, which was a good indicator that the IPO was well received by the general public in the three-week period. They said the Ugandan retail segment applied for shares worth about Shs35billion and the East African investors applied for shares worth over Shs100billion.

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