Despite not meeting the minimum listing requirements set by the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, Airtel Africa has gotten a waiver to list on the premier bourse.
India’s Bharti Airtel had announced its plan to execute a dual listing on the London Stock Exchange and the NSE. It was a move planned to reduce debt overload of Nigeria’s second largest mobile carrier.
While its London IPO ended up to be a huge disappointment with 16% drop in its share price on the first trading day, its Nigerian listing already looking like a déjà vu of its London IPO.
Apparently, Airtel Africa could not meet up with the listing requirements of having a minimum of 300 shareholders to get approval from the NSE.
To pave way for its listing, the NSE said it will give a waiver to Airtel Africa because it has the power to do so and more importantly, the peculiar nature of Airtel’s IPO that limited the offer to selected high net-worth individuals.
However, the NSE said it will add a caveat to Airtel Africa’s shares. It has on it a ‘below listing standard’ a CSI code which warns investing public of the risk of dealing in such shares.
Bharti Airtel acquired Zain’s operations across West Africa and East Africa with Nigeria as its largest single market.