Remarks By Mrs Stella Kilonzo, Chief Executive, Capital Marketsauthority, During The Official Listing By Introduction Of Ranscentury Ltd Shares On July 14, 2011 At The Nairobi Stock Exchange
- The Chairman of Trans-Century Ltd, Mr. Zeph Mbugua;
- The Chief Executive Officer of Trans-Century Ltd, Dr Gachao Kiuna;
- Other Directors of Trans-Century Ltd present;
- The Capital Markets Authority Chairman, Mr. Kung’u Gatabaki, and other
- Board Members present;
- The Chairman of the Nairobi Stock Exchange, Mr. Eddy Njoroge;
- The Chief Executive of the Nairobi Stock Exchange, Mr. Peter Mwangi;
- Other Directors of the Nairobi Stock Exchange present;
- The Lead Sponsoring Broker, Dyer and Blair, represented by the Chairman,
- Mr. Jimnah Mbaru;
- All protocols observed;
- Ladies and Gentlemen:
I am in the unenviable position of having to speak last so you will allow me not to repeatand reiterate the statements that have already been made. I would in the alternative like to take the opportunity to focus the positive signs this particular listing reflects for our growing markets.
Ladies and Gentlemen, the listing by Transcentury Limited is a true success story for the Kenyan investment industry as a whole. This company which started as a small chama has grown in leaps and bounds over the years to be one of the most recognized and respected investment vehicles in East and Central Africa.
Having regard to the strong performance of this company, including their key stakes in already listed counters, it is a credit to the shareholders of this company that they have now gone one step further to list thereby allowing public scrutiny of their operations and
introducing the highest levels of corporate governance and transparency that are prerequisites for public offerings.
This listing is of particular significance to me on two fronts:
- Firstly, as a company with investment interests across the region, Transcentury have opted to list on a securities exchange in Kenya. This is all the more significant as they recently issued a debt instrument in the Mauritius capital markets, but have opted to provide investors in Kenya with the first opportunity to own equity and participate directly in their success story.
- Secondly, this if the first listing on the Alternative Investment Market Segment(AIMS) of the Nairobi Stock Exchange in a great many years. I hope this action will send out a clear message to potential issuers across the region that the capital markets in Kenya offer different options to cater to different issuers’ perspectives and need.
It is in connection with these milestones relating to Transcentury’s listing, I would like to inform potential issuers in Kenya that the Authority is working with the industry to provide greater diversification of products and offerings in the Kenyan markets. In connection with this, we are at an advanced stage, working with the Nairobi Stock Exchange and Central Depository and Settlement Corporation, of introducing a new
listing board at the NSE targeting small and medium size enterprises. We hope this new SME board will provide a critical launching pad for more companies to tap the public equity markets and follow the strong example of Transcentury in embracing the good corporate governance and transparency standards that come with a public listing.
We trust the SME board will also provide a critical avenue for price discovery for private companies and allow their founding shareholders as well as private equity investors an opportunity to realize their investment.
This initiative is expected to unlock capital for SMEs which are responsible for about 80% of employment in Kenya and contributes 40% to GDP. Indeed the Government’s has identified this sector as one of the key drivers of vision 2030, destined to play an effective role as an engine for economic growth, poverty eradication and unemployment creation.
This listing is a testament to the Government’s development agenda for the next 20 years as outlined in the Kenya Vision 2030 which aims to facilitate increase of equity capitalization from 50 percent to 90 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and that of bond capitalization from 16 percent to 30 percent within the Medium Term Plan 2008- 2012 targets.
Ladies and gentlemen, the decision by Trans-Century Ltd. to list on our capital markets is therefore not only a clear demonstration that our capital market has high potential to support the needs of viable enterprises, but also a very strategic one that is expected to herald opportunities for the shareholders. I once again urge other firms to emulate Trans-Century Ltd. and join the market as it positions itself to reap the benefits of the new constitution, the signing of the East African Common Market Protocol and the gains under Vision 2030.
Ladies and Gentlemen; in conclusion to Trans-Century Ltd I say congratulations and welcome to the growing family of listed companies.