Airtel Uganda, a telecom company, has set the price of its shares for the initial public offering (IPO) at Shs100 each as it prepares to list on the Uganda Securities Exchange.
KAMPALA, UGANDA | NOW THEN DIGITAL — Airtel Uganda, the telecom company, has set the share price for its initial public offering (IPO) at Shs100 per share as it prepares to list on the Uganda Securities Exchange.
Airtel Uganda, a unit of India’s Bharti Airtel, is set to become the second listed telecoms company on Uganda’s stock market exchange after MTN Uganda’s listing in December 2021.
This announcement came from Airtel Uganda’s Managing Director, Manoj Murali, during an event at Sheraton Hotel in Kampala.
“Airtel has established itself as the most innovative cellular mobile network operator in Uganda by introducing many firsts in the country’s telecommunication market. The Initial Public Offer will see eight billion shares existing ordinary shares of the company making 20% of the company made available and it will be a value of shs800 billion,” Airtel Uganda, MD Manoj Murali said.
“The IPO shows our commitment to support Uganda’s stock market. It also gives confidence to Ugandan investors including company customers to own a share in the company and participate in our future growth story. We believe this IPO will enhance Airtel Uganda’s profile across the continent,” Mr. Murali added.
The IPO will involve the issuance of eight billion existing ordinary shares, representing 20% of the company’s value at Shs800 billion.
Airtel Uganda claims a 49% market share and 13.8 million active subscribers in 146 districts across Uganda, fulfilling the requirements of the National Telecommunications Operator (NTO) license.
Unlike its rival, MTN Uganda, which completed its share listing in 2021, Airtel was granted a 12-month extension to meet the listing deadline after initially missing it in December.
This IPO is viewed as a commitment to support Uganda’s stock market and an opportunity for Ugandan investors, including customers, to own a share in the company.
The IPO is officially open and will close on October 13, 2023, at 4 p.m., according to Hannington Karuhanga, Airtel Uganda’s board chairperson.
Keith Kalyegira, the CEO of the Capital Markets Authority, hailed this development as a significant milestone, estimating that the Uganda Securities Exchange’s total market capitalization would rise from about Shs7.2 trillion to Shs11.2 trillion.
“With 20% of its shares being issued, the total market capitalization on the Uganda Securities Exchange will increase from about shs7.2 trillion to about shs11.2 trillion. This means we have crossed the shs10 trillion mark for the first time in our history,” Kalyegira said.
“As the regulator, we expect to continue operating with the highest standards of corporate governance and with utmost dedication.” he added.
Absa Bank Uganda is the lead transaction advisor for the IPO, and Crested Stocks and Securities Limited serves as the lead sponsoring broker.
“Absa is honoured to be part of this IPO journey in Uganda offering our financial expertise, advisory and support as the lead transaction advisor. This IPO demonstrates Airtel’s commitment to this market by listing and issuing shares to the public. It is a vote of confidence in Uganda’s capital market,” Absa bank Uganda Managing Director, Mumba Kalifungwa said.
Airtel Uganda, which started as Celtel Uganda in 1995, became the country’s first mobile cellular network. As of December 31, 2022, the company reported revenues of Shs1.59 trillion, EBITDA of Shs888 billion, and net income of Shs326 billion.
Upon completion of the listing, Airtel Uganda will be the second listed telecom company on Uganda’s stock market exchange, following MTN Uganda, which is majority-owned by South Africa’s MTN Group and was listed in December 2021. Airtel Uganda is a unit of India’s Bharti Airtel.
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