• Thursday, February 22, 2024
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Airtel jumps 10% in first trading after listing 3.75bn shares

Airtel Africa-NSE

Airtel Africa Plc, the second largest telecommunication company in Africa by subscriber base, recorded an impressive start Tuesday on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) after listing 3.75 billion ordinary shares.

The shares of the telecoms firm, which were listed at N363 per share at the Lagos bourse at 2:18 PM Nigerian time after an Initial Public Offering (IPO), gained 10 percent, the daily acceptable increase on the NSE, to close at N399.30 per share.

“The gain is not reflecting market sentiment,” said Paul Uzum, a Lagos-based stockbroker.
Uzum maintained that the market would correct the price of the telco’s stock in the coming trading sessions and narrow the chances for price arbitrage.

As a result of the price gain, the stock led the pack of gainers at the local bourse with Cadbury and Japaul Oil and Maritime Services rising 4.37 percent and 4.35 percent to close at N11.95 and 24 kobo, respectively.

Airtel Africa has embarked on a cross-border listing of its shares on the NSE and the London Stock Exchange (LSE). The primary listing was performed at the London bourse on Friday, June 28, while the NSE served as the secondary market for the stock.

“When Airtel was listed in the market, we saw a lot of trades taking place,” Charles Fakrogha, stockbroker at the NSE and head of investment banking at CityCode Trust Ltd, told BusinessDay. “However, it is too early to judge the market sentiment of the price of Airtel.”

The firm is the third-largest company on the NSE by market capitalisation after Dangote Cement and MTN Nigeria, having recorded a total market value of N1.5 trillion as at the close of trading.

However, Fakrogha pointed out that the coming trading days would determine how investors would perceive the stock of the telecommunication company.

The stock traded 100,110 units of shares valued at N39.97 million within 12 minutes before the sounding of the closing gong by the Chief Executive Officer of Airtel Nigeria, Segun Ogunsanya.

Meanwhile, the stock market sustained its bullish trend with a marginal increase of 0.10 percent as the All Share Index of the NSE closed at 29,318.02 points.