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MTN Uganda IPO Undersubscribed

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Investors bought only 64 percent of the shares in the deeply discounted initial public offering (IPO) by MTN Uganda, a statement from the company showed late Friday.

The telecom sought to raise Sh27.6 billion from the sale of 4.47 billion shares as part of the Uganda government’s push to spur local ownership in the industry.

The IPO, which was opened to East African investors –from Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi— raised Sh16.94 billion (Ush535.9 billion).

Kenya’s National Social Security Fund (NSSF) bought 39.1 million shares in the Ugandan unit of South African-owned MTN for a 0.18 stake, securing sixth place among the top ten shareholders.

South Africa’s MTN Group was selling a fifth of its stake in its Ugandan subsidiary at a price of Ush 200 or Sh6.2 apiece.

To motivate investors, the telco offered free shares of between five and 10 units for every 100 units allocated. It required applications for the purchase of at least 1.1 billion shares.

The incentive shares are rare for an IPO in the regional market and signalled MTN’s determination to ensure the offer was successful.

The IPO had been tipped to be Uganda’s biggest ever and seen as a major boost to its stock market, a small bourse with 40,000 investors trading just 17 stocks.

The shares will start trading on the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) on December 7.

The listing will make MTN Uganda the second publicly traded telco in EAC after Safaricom IPO on the NSE in 2008.

Kenyan investment bank Dyer and Blair, owned by billionaire businessman Jimnah Mbaru, was the lead retail broker for the MTN IPO.

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Business

Flights From Dubai To Nairobi Resume

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Kenya government has lifted a ban on flights from Dubai entering its territory ending a weeks-long dispute with the United Arab Emirates.

The East African nation had imposed a ban on all inbound and transit passenger flights from the Middle East nation two weeks ago. The ban was lifted Monday midnight, offering a major relief to hundreds of travellers between the two destinations.

The ban did not however affect cargo flights that are normally flown by carriers such as Kenya Airways (KQ) and Emirates airline from UEA into Kenya.

“Kenya shall do a NOTAM lifting the suspension of flights to and from UAE from midnight tonight (Monday),’’ said Gilbert Kibe Director-General Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA).

The ban came a few days after UAE extended the Kenya flight ban after it established that travellers from Nairobi were testing positive for Covid-19 after arrival in the Middle East nation, despite carrying negative test results.

Kibe said the scheme involved a racket of private medical testing centres that colluded with travellers to issue fake Covid-19 PCR results to aid their travel.

The Ministry of Health has however launched investigations into the matter with a view to bringing to book health officials who were involved in the shoddy deal that has now coasted Kenya millions of shillings in lost passenger revenues.

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Business

Bralirwa Shares Trading Badly On Rwanda Stock Exchange

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Since the just concluded festive season, Rwanda’s largest brewer has not been in good books with its clients as retailers repeatedly complain of lack of some products and  sometimes rationing of beers.

“It is very hard to get grand Primus beers. Every time I send someone to get them from the depot we are told that distributors  haven’t supplied,” says Christine Nyiramariza a bar owner in Gatsibo district.

Trending on twitter is a very confusing situation of Amstel beer filled in Mutzig bottles.

According to Rwanda Stock Exchange, as of Friday, the value of Bralirwa share had dropped to Rwf124.

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Business

Equity Bank Gets £37m From British Agency To Lend SMEs

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UK’s Minister for Africa, Vicky Ford MP (pictured above) said his government was extending a total of £37 million to Equity Bank Kenya for onward lending to small businesses.

“Our economic partnership is delivering impressive results, and we have some ambitious, exciting plans for the future. Plans that will deliver for Kenya, and for the UK, long into our shared future,” she said.

This money is being channeled through UK’s development finance institution British International Investment (BII) – formerly known as CDC Group. BII is a key part of the UK government’s wider plans to mobilise up to £8 billion a year of public and private sector investment in international projects by 2025.

This will include BII partnering with capital markets and sovereign wealth funds to scale up financing and help the private sector move in.

BII will prioritise sustainable infrastructure investment to provide clean, honest and reliable financing and avoid low and middle-income countries being left with bad and unsustainable debt.

Ford also stated that the UK will increase its support for green manufacturing in Kenya by providing an additional £400,000 to help Kenya build a green manufacturing industry, increasing its support to the Ministry of Trade and the wider Kenyan manufacturing sector in this area.

Green manufacturing was highlighted by President Kenyatta at COP26 as a key opportunity for Kenya to create new green jobs.

The funding through the UK’s Manufacturing Africa programme will provide expert analysis and advice on how government policy and the organised private sector can help build this industry and create new green jobs for Kenyans.

Kenya is already the third biggest portfolio for BII, with Sh42 billion investments across 83 companies. Those companies support 36,350 jobs and pay Sh2.6 billion in taxes.

“This is how we will deliver world-class projects, characterised by high standards and outstanding expertise, without forcing huge new debts onto countries such as Kenya,” she said.

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