By Peter Egwuatu & Nkiru Nnorom
The listing of MTN Nigeria Communications Plc on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, yesterday, boosted market capitalisation by N1.8trillion, even as the limited supply of the shares constrained deals.
Consequently, the NSE market capitalisation closed at N12.525 trillion up from N10.626 trillion when trading opened. Also the share price of the telecom giant rose by 10 percent to close at N99.00 per share.
The company was listed by the introduction of 20.35 billion ordinary shares at a price of N90 per share (being phase one on the company’s listing plans). The listing price was determined from private over-the-counter share deal by existing shareholders over the past six months. The price values the telecoms company at N1.84 trillion (about $6 billion).
The listing by introduction means that the shares of existing MTN Nigeria shareholders were listed without additional public sale of shares. From this point, all MTN Nigeria shareholders will be free to trade their shares on the Exchange.
Commenting on the development, National Council President, NSE, Otunba Abimbola Ogunbanjo, said: “We are particularly pleased that MTN Nigeria has joined the prestigious club of companies listed on our Premium Board with this landmark transaction, which will differentiate it as a professionally run telecommunications company with high standards, having met NSE’s listing criteria.
“It is our expectation that the MTN Nigeria listing, which is NSE’s second largest, will encourage other telecommunication companies to list their shares on the Exchange, thereby opening the sector up to cheaper, long term capital that will boost innovation and development.”
In its welcome address, Chief Executive Officer, NSE, Mr. Oscar N. Onyema, said: “We are delighted to welcome MTN Nigeria to the Exchange. Today’s listing is a promising development in the country’s telecommunications sector and we encourage other players in the sector to explore the different opportunities in the capital markets for raising long term capital. As a listing platform of choice, today’s listing will add to our bouquet of diverse investment offerings to the public. Having MTN Nigeria listed in our market is a testament of the Exchange’s commitment to building a dynamic and inclusive market and creating channels for sustainable investment. This listing will promote liquidity for MTN Nigeria, enhance its value and increase transparency, as our platform remains one of the best avenues for raising capital and enabling sustainable growth for national development”.
Speaking at the fact behind the listing, Ferdi Moolman, CEO of MTN Nigeria said: “Subject to market conditions, appetite and demand, the company would initiate Phase 2 of the listing plans which is the Initial Public Offering (IPO), to give more Nigerians greater access to the MTN opportunity.”