Vodacom IPO extended again as Tigo, MIC prepare offers

Saturday July 8 2017

A Tigo telecom company outlet. PHOTO FILE |

A Tigo telecom company outlet. PHOTO FILE | NATION 

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Tanzania's capital Markets Securities Authority has once again extended the Vodacom initial public offering to allow foreigners to participate in it.

Charles Shirima, public relations manager at CMSA, said the extension covers 10 working days. Vodacom Tanzania issued offered 560 million shares to the public on March 9, to close on April 19, but the offer was extended for three weeks to allow government officials to buy shares.

The extension ended on May 11 with the regulator expected to announce results. This week, it announced a new window.

Meanwhile, the country’s other large telecommunications companies, MIC Tanzania Ltd — trading as Tigo — and Bharti Airtel are putting the final touches on their plans to sell 25 per cent of their shares through an Initial Public Offering.

Their announcement came soon after the largest Telco, Vodacom, which held its IPO in March.

Mr Shirima said Tigo and Airtel are about to complete the process of issuing IPOs.

Figures from the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority rank Tigo and Airtel, the second and third largest telecoms, with a market share of 29 per cent and 26 per cent respectively. Vodacom leads with 31 per cent.

Tigo recorded 11,677,344 subscribers and Airtel Tanzania had 10,456,177 in 2016.

According to Mr Shirima, Tigo and Bharti Airtel have submitted their prospectuses and sought to list domestically.

Orbit Securities, Vodacom’s lead advisor, said the IPO subscriber numbers will be made public once the Capital Markets and Securities Authority completes verification.

The law requiring that telecoms sell shares to the public was passed in 2010. But operators remained unmoved until last year when President John Magufuli ordered immediate compliance with the law.