Vodacom Tanzania says it is optimistic of meeting its Initial Public Offer (IPO) target of raising 476bn/- before the deadline on Wednesday next week despite low liquidity challenges facing investors.
The Vodacom Tanzania Plc Managing Director Ian Ferrao said in a statement that they were confident of achieving their objectives given strong positive response to the IPO since its launch last month.
"We have seen a very strong response to the IPO since its launch on March 9 this year and we are seeing subscriptions levels increase dramatically as we approach the close of the subscription period on Wednesday April 19.
I remain very confident that we will achieve our objectives accordingly," he said in the statement. Vodacom Tanzania Plc, a subsidiary of South Africa's Vodacom and the biggest telecommunication operator in Tanzania, floated 560 million shares, equivalent to 25 per cent of its total equity. It is expecting to raise 476bn/- ($213.45 million).
The firm set its IPO share price at 850 shillings each. It is so far the only telecoms firm to launch an IPO under mandatory listing rules under the Electronic and Postal Communications Act of 2010 which requires telecommunications firms to offload 25 per cent of their stake to the public.
The Vodacom Tanzania IPO is Tanzania's biggest ever, according to stock brokers and they predicted it would attract strong interest from investors.
Other two major mobile operators, Millicom subsidiary Tigo and a local unit of India's Bharti Airtel, have also submitted their prospectuses, but their IPOs have yet to be approved. Ferrao called on Tanzanians to make use of remaining days as a great opportunity to acquire Vodacom Tanzania's public offer of shares.
"As we are approaching and getting closer to IPO closing date, we still believe that our customers and Tanzanians at large will not be left behind by this lucrative opportunity to invest in telecom industry in the country and eventually to economically empower themselves," he said.