MTN Nigeria registers 20.3 billion ordinary shares, but there is a catch, no new shares will be issues, and no additional fund will be raised.   


08 May 2019 : MTN Nigeria has successfully registered 20,354,513,050 ordinary shares of N0.02 each with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The listing is by Introduction and not through IPO ( unlike Ghana, where it listed through an IPO )


According to Ferdi Moolman, MTN Nigeria CEO, “I am excited we have achieved another milestone in our listing process and want to thank the SEC and the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) for supporting us through the process. We have now begun to engage with the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) to complete the listing process.”


Regulatory impediments ?


Africa’s largest telecom firm incurred a massive $5.2 billion ( post negotiations) fine arising from its failure to deactivate 5 million unregistered SIM cards in 2015. Hence, the listing is a government requirement. 


In April 2018, Prof. Umar Danbatta, the Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), had informed that Nigeria’s favourite Telecom has paid more than 50% of the firm, putting the figure at N165 billion.


Other regulatory penalties include the “refund of a total $8.134 billion moved out of the country" for rupturing the country's forex regulations and the $2 billion tax demand by the government.


In December 2018, MTN and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had reached an out of court settlement on the notorious $8.1 billion illegal repatriation palaver while the tax demand case is still pending in court.


How is the Listing by Introduction different from IPO


IPO essentially is a method of listing new shares (financial assets of a company) while Listing by Introduction means that the company will allow shareholders to sell already existing shares or those already been listed on another exchange.


In essence, for the MTN listing no new shares will be issued and no additional funds will be raised but the telecoms firm will start trading on the Nigerian market. 


Is it allowed to but shares on Listed by Introduction?


Yes, but it would be a good idea to read the company’s listing document, understand the fundamentals of the company, its performance so far, it’s market outlook and dynamics. This will help you make an informed decision and thus minimise the investment risk. investing in any company’s shares or stock is risky but you can make a short run profit if you have a good stockbroker.


Will this really help Nigeria and its citizens?


Theoretically, listing of shares on the country's bourse helps facilitate the domestic investments as well as foreign direct inflow which further deepens the development and growth, thus helping the economy.


Reporting for EasyKobo on Wednesday , 08 May 2019 in Lagos, Nigeria


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