So far, South Africa’s JSE Ltd (www.jse.co.za) securities exchange has achieved limited success with its Africa Board, aimed to encourage dual-listing of leading African equities on the JSE as part of a strategy to help capital markets development. On 8 April the JSE Executive appointed an advisory committee (Africa Board Advisory Committee) to boost the JSE Africa Board, part of the main equities market, to achieve its mission and strategic objective to provide a world-class stock exchange platform and help attract capital to the African continent.
The committee was launched in Accra, Ghana, and comprises 9 members from several African countries. Membership of the Advisory Committee will also grow and change over time. The chair is Nathan Mintah, previously a partner at private equity firm Kingdom Zephyr Africa Management Company and having over 18 years’ of investment banking and operating experience. Bolaji Balogun, CEO of Chapel Hill Denham Group, Nigeria is another member.
The task of the committee is to promote the business, goals and objectives of the JSE Africa Board to the main stakeholders of the investment community, including issuers, investors, service providers (i.e. banks, auditing firms, legal firms etc), governments and regulators. The committee is also mandated to advise on operational matters relating to the Africa Board, including reviewing the strategy and development of relevant new products that facilitate capital flows into Africa; advise from time to time on any proposed amendments and/or improvements to the JSE Africa Board model; assist business development efforts by facilitating key meetings in jurisdictions where Advisory Committee members have influence; offer advice on protocol, regulatory interpretation in different jurisdictions and assist in sourcing funding for the operations of the Africa Board.
Speaking at a media briefing in Accra on 8 April, Maureen Dlamini, Executive Head of the JSE Africa Board said: “The Africa Board Advisory Committee will help us achieve the objectives espoused by the JSE Africa Board that include attracting foreign direct investment to Africa in order to provide the finance necessary for development, and to allow the people of Africa to share in the African growth story.”
Mr Mintah said his appointment as Chairperson of the advisory committee is a timely and important challenge: “We need a concerted effort to successfully promote the growth of capital markets on the African continent and the JSE Africa Board is the ideal platform to achieve this goal.”
Dlamini said the world has become aware of the business opportunities in Africa. “The JSE Africa Board is ready and able to provide African companies that have pan-African strategies with a springboard to increase their footprint in Africa, using a trading platform that is widely respected,” she says.
The JSE, which operates Africa’s largest stock exchange, has had two listings since creating its Africa board in 2009. Trustco, a micro financial services group, has seen a 20% boost in its share price since it was listed in February 2009. Wilderness Holdings, a Botswana-based ecotourism company, has climbed 8.7% since it listed in April 2010. Both companies have primary listings in their home markets.