Tuesday, July 09, 2019 / 07.00PM /
Ottoabasi Abasiekong for Proshare WebTV / Header Image Credit: NSE
Today Stockbrokers and Shareholders witnessed the listing of Nigeria’s third largest telecommunications company (Telco), Airtel Africa Plc, on the mainboard of the Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE).
Doyen of the market, Alhaji Rasheed Yusuf, commended Airtel for listing on the market but reemphasized the need to forge an effective partnership with the stock-broking community and sustain operational transparency.
He said stockbrokers were delighted at the shared prosperity that Airtel Africa Plc has proposed for Nigerian investors through its listing.
“We hope you will live up to the expectations of companies that have listed before you,” he said.
Mr. David Adonri of HighCap Securities and Mr. Charles Fakrogha of City Code Securities in separate interviews with Proshare WebTV believed the listing of Airtel Africa, will deepen the capital market and expand the telecommunications sector index in the market.
Fakrogha also stressed the need for Airtel to comply with the post-listing requirements of the NSE, which will build investor confidence.
On his part, the President of Progressives Shareholders Association of Nigeria Mr. Boniface Okezie made a strong case for Airtel to give top priority to dividend payments.
Okezie believed that Nigerian deserved the benefits of dividends for keeping faith with the brand that has evolved from Econet Wireless in 2001 to the brand name of Airtel in 2019.
He called on the Securities and Exchange Commission and Nigeria Stock Exchange to ensure that Airtel Africa Plc adheres to the corporate governance principles, laid out for listed companies.
The Nigeria Stock Exchange admitted N3.75bn worth of Airtel ordinary shares into the market.
According to the CEO of Airtel Networks Nigeria Mr. Segun Ogunsanya, the African market has economies with improved GDP growth rates, and a fast-rising youth population, which were opportunities for growth.
Ogunsanya said that with Airtel Africa’s operations in 14 countries, the company was prepared to enable improved connectivity and deepen financial inclusion.
In terms of strategy the Airtel Nigeria CEO stated that the company was exploring the following areas;
According to him, “It is difficult to be big in Africa, without playing big in Nigeria.”
A board member with Airtel Africa Plc Awuneba Ajumogobia in her remarks said she was pleased with the listing at the NSE, and believed Nigerians had a lot to benefit in the area of shared prosperity, mobile money services and financial inclusion.
The Airtel Africa listing drove the All Share Index up to 0.10%, which means the market closed positively for the day.
Market Capitalization increased from N12.909trillion on Monday, July 08, 2019 to N14.288trillion on Tuesday, July 09, 2019, which means that the Airtel listing added N1.4bn to the market capitalization.
To mark the listing, the CEO of the Airtel Networks Nigeria .Ogunsanya and board member Airtel Africa Awuneba Ajumogobia, both performed the ceremonial closing gong in the presence of the CEO of NSE .Onyema.