MTN Nigeria has finally confirmed that it has received the go-ahead of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, to list its shares on the bourse.
Lagos-based MTN Nigeria has been providing financial regulators and the exchange its official filing to list on the exchange through an introduction.
The move will make Nigeria’s largest mobile carrier the second largest traded company by market capitalization of about N1.8 trillion.
The company said in a statement that:
has received approval to list on the Premium Board of The Nigerian Stock Exchange (“NSE”). The listing is set to proceed on 16 May 2019 and will be done by way of an introductory listing. The listing by introduction means that the shares of existing MTN Nigeria shareholders will be listed without an additional public sale of shares. From this point, all MTN Nigeria shareholders will be free to trade their shares on the NSE.
Commenting on the announcement, Ferdi Moolman, CEO of MTN Nigeria said “It gives me great pleasure to confirm that the official listing via introduction of MTN’s shares on the NSE will take place on Thursday May 16.” We appreciate the continued support afforded us by the government, regulators and people of this great nation. In particular, I would like to thank the staff and management of MTN Nigeria who worked tirelessly to make this day possible. This is just the beginning, we still intend to pursue a future Public Offer giving more Nigerians greater access to the MTN opportunity.”
There are obvious reasons MTN is not disposed to an IPO. Apart from various regulatory issues it has faced in the past, there are indications that the company could be averting lackluster fundraising where it might not raise up to what it needs to finance expansion plans. It would be recalled that MTN Ghana‘s was only able to raise about 50% of its target.
Yesterday, MTN said it is planning to raise about $555 million through bonds and loans to finance its expansion activities in Nigeria.
The listing will make MTN the only mobile carrier listed on the bourse. Globacom and Bharti Airtel’s local unit are private companies. Analysts in the industry said the listing of MTN could encourage its competitors to consider a similar listing.