Kenyans can now individually own a stake of the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) after the continental trade finance bank opened shareholding to the public.
Afrexim which finances and promotes African trade said it will launch a $300 million (about Sh31.1 billion) equity offering, using depositary receipts backed by its Class “D” shares.
This will see it sell part of the multilateral lender to the investing public in a deal arranged by Mauritius financial services firm SBM Group.
Depositary receipts are certificates that represent ownership interest in a company’s common stock shares, marketed outside of the company’s home country.
“The depositary receipts issuance represents an opportunity for Afreximbank to diversify its shareholder base by enabling investors in Africa and beyond,” said Benedict Oramah, President of Afreximbank.
Dr Oramah added the depositary receipts would enable the Cairo headquartered bank to increase its permanent source of capital.
The receipts whose listing has been approved on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius, is subject to raising funds by the end of September, the bank said.
As a profit-oriented multilateral institution with a mixed public-private shareholder base, Afreximbank focuses on private sector loans, guarantees and advisory services.
The bank’s four-tier shareholder base is a mix of public and private entities divided into four classes and consists of African governments, central banks, regional and sub-regional institutions, private investors and financial institutions, as well as non-African financial institutions.
Class ‘C’ shares are held by non-African investors, mostly international banks and export credit agencies.