The privately-owned Starcomms telecommunications company has been listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), making it the first telecommunications firm to be publicly quoted.
On Monday, Starcomms’ stocks, which was the only one listed under the newly-created Communications sub sector, opened with 13.65 naira and closed at 14.33 naira.
The company recorded a turnover of 135.4 million shares worth 1.94 billion naira in 660 deals.
“We believe in the concept of quality service delivery. Nigerians deserves the best telecommunication service. To achieve this we have put in enough base stations across the country so that more people can talk to their beloved ones,” Maher Qubain, Chief Executive Officer of the company, told investors and stockbrokers during the listing.
Established in 1995 with 100,000 subscribers, the company now has over 1.5 million customers with presence in 17 cities in Nigeria.
The company is also the fourth largest telecommunications operator and a market leader in providing mobile voice, fixed wireless voice and wireless data services.
“The idea of coming to the market, apart from raising funds, is to provide opportunities for other Nigerians to be part owner in the business.
”In spite of the challenges of erratic power supply, insecurity and others, we still believe in the economy and that explains why we are investing heavily in it,” company chairman Maan Lababidi told PANA.
Having successfully completed a private placement which raked in 64.3 billion naira, the company said it would invest the money to extend coverage access to more people, with 31 other towns targeted to be reached before the end of 2008 (118 naira=US$1).
A senior official of the NSE who represented the Director General, Binus Yaroe, expressed delight at the listing of the historic listing of the telecommunications firm.