Ugandans Invited To Benefit From Sale Of Umeme Shares

pharmacy geneva;”>During the launch of the Initial Public Offering at Kampala Serena Hotel on Monday, order Umeme Managing Director Charles Chapman said the listing on the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE) is aimed at allowing customers to join the company’s “success story” and also “boost transparency.”

Chapman told journalists, investors and bankers that Umeme’s strategy is to improve customer service, grow the customer base and also continue contributing to national development.

He also highlighted some of Umeme’s achievements such as developing network systems, putting in place district and regional structures, reduction in power losses, introduction of pre-paid meter billing systems and growth in revenue collections.

Chapman said the company expects to invest $35m this year to develop the power distribution infrastructure.

“We have so far generated $104m and more has been invested in replacing poles, worn out cables and other equipment we found in bad shape,” said Chapman.

“Our plan is to grow the customer base, improve customer service and ensure well functioning centers all over the country.”

USE boss Charles Mbiire said Umeme was the 8th local company and 15th equity listing.

“We encourage this because it improves the culture of saving,” said Mbiire, adding, “Umeme has in the last months turned around.”

He further stated that “the USE rules and regulations are going to try to protect the value of investment in Umeme.”

Umeme Board OF Directors Chairman, Patrick Bitature, invited the public to join in sharing the spoils that will come with buying shares.

“The offer is designed to diversify the ownership of the Company and in particular to attract Ugandan investors including employees and customers. We are excited about the strong growth potential for Umeme. We believe the growth outlook for Uganda economy will continue to drive the demand for electricity,” said Bitature.

“We have made use of local and international professional advisers in the pricing of the offer, who have ensured that the offer price of Shs275 per share is reasonable,” he clarified.

Earlier, Chapman said as of June 30 2012, Umeme had total outstanding loans of Shs120.6bn.

“The preceding balance reflects two loans both of which are denominated in US dollars, specifically a shareholder loan of $27.0 million and a loan from the IFC of $21.6 million. Umeme also has credit facilities with Standard Chartered Bank Uganda Limited of $9.5 million (Shs23.5bn) of which none were drawn as that date,” said Chapman.

The vendors are offering 622,378,000 shares in Umeme at a price of Shs275 per share.

350,000,000 sale shares are being sold by Umeme Holdings and 272,378,000 subscription shares are new shares of the company offered by subscription.

On completion of the offer, the aggregate offer shares will constitute 38% of the issued share capital of the company which meets the listing rules requirements that immediately following the offering at least 20% of the shares are held by public shareholders.

The minimum number of offer shares for which application may be made is 1,000 applications for greater than this minimum must be in multiples of 100 offer shares.

54% of the offer shares have been earmarked for the Domestic Pool (employees and directors, retail east Africans and Qualified Institutional Investors commonly known as QIIs) and the balance of 46% of the offer shares for the international pool.

According to Umeme officials, shares are subject to price fluctuations and allocation of the offer shares may take longer than expected.

Umeme was incorporated in Uganda as a private limited liability company on May 6 2004 and was converted into a public company on June 28 2012 under the companies Act.

Umeme is a subsidiary of Umeme Holdings, the latter being an auxiliary of Actis Infrastructure 2 LP, an investment fund under the management of Actis, through a holding company in Mauritius.

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