Serrari Group

Airtel Uganda Limited has unveiled its strategic move to launch an Initial Public Offering (IPO) involving 8 billion existing ordinary shares, equating to a 20% stake in the company. The IPO, which was officially initiated on August 30, 2023, is set to conclude on October 13, with the primary objective of garnering a substantial capital injection of UGX 800 billion (approximately $216 million).

Upon the successful conclusion of the IPO, subject to requisite regulatory clearances, Airtel Uganda is poised to become a publicly traded entity on the esteemed Main Investment Market Segment of the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE). Trading activities for the newly listed company are slated to kick off on October 31.

Founded in 1995, Airtel Uganda stands as a subsidiary of Airtel Africa plc, establishing its roots in the nation’s telecommunications landscape. At present, the company boasts an extensive customer base of 14.3 million active subscribers, maintaining a notable presence across 146 districts throughout Uganda. Impressively, Airtel Uganda has captured a commanding market share, responsible for 49% of the telecom revenue and 47.3% of the subscriber market.

The imperative behind the IPO aligns harmoniously with Uganda’s regulatory framework, mandating that telecommunications enterprises make available at least 20% of their shares for listing on an authorized domestic stock exchange.

Financial insights provided by the company reveal its strong performance in the year concluding on December 31, 2022. During this period, Airtel Uganda attained remarkable revenue figures amounting to UGX 1,594 billion. Additionally, the company reported an EBITDA of UGX 888 billion and a net income of UGX 326 billion.

The IPO proceedings are being orchestrated with the guidance of esteemed financial institutions. Absa Bank Uganda Limited has taken on the mantle of Lead Transaction Adviser, whereas Crested Stocks and Securities Limited fulfills the role of Lead Sponsoring Broker. Legal oversight is managed by the reputable Katende, Ssempebwa & Company Advocates, while Ernst & Young Certified Public Accountants are entrusted as Reporting Accountants.

The announcement resonates with echoes from the recent past, as MTN Uganda conducted a similar IPO in 2021 on the Ugandan stock exchange. Despite generating 535.94 billion shillings ($150.2 million or R2.42 billion), the outcome fell short of the initially projected goal, accounting for less than two-thirds of the intended target. The offering involved the allocation of approximately 2.9 billion shares from the total pool of 4.5 billion shares that had been made accessible.

As Airtel Uganda embarks on this transformative IPO journey, market watchers eagerly anticipate its impact on the telecommunications sector and the broader financial landscape within Uganda.

Photo Source: Google

August 31, 2023

By: Delino Gayweh

Serrari Financial Analyst

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