Rwanda’s capital market regulator told Bloomberg newsagency on 7 September that it had approved the cross listing of shares in Nation Media Group Ltd. (www.nationmedia.com), East Africa’s biggest media company, on Rwanda’s over-the- counter (OTC) securities market. Robert Mathu, executive director of the Capital Market Advisory Council (CMAC – www.cmac.org.rw) reportedly said: “We approved on condition of fulfilling pending things like submitting an information-disclosure document. They could cross-list toward the end of this month.”
Nation Media will be the second company to trade on the Rwandan OTC, and is one of 4 cross listings expected, as reported previously. Kenya Commercial Bank Ltd. cross-listed its shares in 2009. Six bonds also trade on the Rwandan market, including a two-year, 2.5 billion-franc ($4.3 million) security sold last month, according to the Rwandan central bank. A combined 21.5 billion Rwandan francs has been raised through bond sales on the Rwandan market since 2008, according to CMAC data. On average, about 8,400 shares currently trade on the Rwandan market every month, generating turnover of 1.4 million francs, according CMAC data cited by Bloomberg.
Nation Media is owned by the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development SA. Its primary listing is on the Nairobi Stock Exchange and the company announced plans in March to list in Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.
“Nation Media’s listing gives investors in Rwanda an opportunity to participate in the leading media company in the region, and gets Rwanda to participate in regional integration of East Africa’s capital markets,” Mathu said. “It is a small market, but promising to grow. We expect an initial public offer by BRALIRWA from the private sector this year.” The listing of Brasseries et Limonaderies du Rwanda SA (BRALIRWA) as reported previously on this blog would be a major event. The Government plans to offer 25% of BRALIRWA to public investors and to sell 5% to Heineken NV, which earlier bought 70% of the shares from the Government.