As Uganda Securities Exchange (USE) marks 10 years of o peration this month, the youngest bourse in East Africa listed its 10th product, Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB), Tuesday.
At its first trading, a total of 10,000 KCB shares, each costing Uganda shilling s 580 KCB were traded in one deal, witnessed by the bank’s board members, senior
officials and the local bourse’s authorities.
“We are mainly to provide Ugandan investors a unique and early opportunity to sh are in the bank’s success, an East African owned business, as it firmly establis h es its footprint across the region, moving towards one economic bloc,” said KCB B oard Chairman, Peter Muthoka, moments before ringing the bell to commence tradin g on USE in the capital Kampala.
Muthoka revealed that the bank would before the end of this year conclude its de sired listing on the Dar-Es-Salaam Stock Exchange and Rwanda, before venturing i n to Burundi next year, completing its presence in the East African Community (EAC ) .
Asked where they got the courage to undertake a cross-border listing at a time o f international financial turbulence, KCB Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Odour Oti e no said, “I do know that international prices of stocks have collapsed, even in N airobi, but I confirm that the fundamentals of our business (capital, liquidity a nd assets as indicated on our balance sheet) all remain strong.”
KCB, a public listed company on the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE), is now the fou rth company to get cross-listed on the USE after East African Breweries Limited,
Kenya Airways, Jubilee Holdings Limited which has a presence in Uganda.
KCB commenced business in Uganda in November 2007, attracting up to Shs21 billio n in deposits with three branches in Kampala.
The bank operates units in Southern Sudan, Tanzania and goes to open units in Rw anda and Zanzibar next week.
Chief executive officer of the Uganda Capital Markets Authority (CMA), Japhet Ka tto, revealed in an interview that Kenya’s Equity Bank follows suit to list on U S E.
“KCB is one of East Africa’s most profitable financial institutions and has with ered the Kenya’s post-election instability and the global financial turmoil to a n nounce a growth of 64 per cent in its 2008 third quarter profits,” Kato disclose d . KCB recently published its trading results indicating a rise of U Shs120 billion up from about Shs 74 billion in the first nine months of operation in Uganda.
As a group, the bank also released a balance sheet indicating profits after tax swelling by more than half to about K Shs 83 billion up from K Shs 49 billion in the same period last year.