Equities market reverse losses as NSE becomes PLC

The Nigerian equities market has reversed losses as the members of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) gave the nod for the demutualisation of the Exchange on Tuesday at a Court-Ordered Meeting (CON) and an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM).

With the approval of the dealing members and stockbrokers of the NSE, the Exchange be converted from a company limited by guarantee to a company limited by shares and re-registered a public company in the name Nigerian Exchange Group PLC.

Therefore an authorised share capital of N1.250 billion consisting of 2.5billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each of the Exchange would be registered with the corporate affairs commission for Nigerian Exchange Group PLC

On the floor of the Exchange,  the All-Share Index (ASI) gained 1.70 per cent to close at 26,255.11 basis points. Similarly, the overall market capitalisation size increased by N208.3 billion to close at N13.681 trillion, leaving the Month-to-Date return positive at 0.15 per cent, while Year-to-Date losses moderated to 2.19 per cent.

Market sentiment, as measured by market breadth, was positive, as 21 stocks gained, relative to 12 losers. PZ and Access Bank led the gainers with 9.88 and 9.74 per cent, respectively, while ABC Transport and Dangote Sugar led the decliner’s chart with ten per cent.

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The total volume of trades on the local bourse for the day increased to 387.9 million units, valued at N6.08 billion and exchanged in 4,901 deals.

Transactions in the shares of Guaranty Trust Bank topped the activity chart with 83.1million shares valued at N2.01 billion, followed with 54.6 million shares worth N1.05 billion of Zenith Bank shares.

United Bank for Africa traded 37.8 million shares valued at N261.4 million, while FBN Holdings traded 32.19 million worth N163.43 million, just as Access Bank traded 31.06 million shares worth N256.18 million.

Meanwhile, members of NSE passed requisite resolutions for the demutualisation of The Exchange at a Court-Ordered Meeting (COM) and an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) at The Grand Banquet Hall, Civic Centre, Lagos.

Speaking at the EGM, President of the National Council, NSE, Otunba Abimbola Ogunbanjo, said, “I feel elated that 19 years after initiating the process to demutualise and on the 60th anniversary of the Exchange, we are close to achieving the goal. The successful demutualisation of the Exchange was one of my main objectives when I assumed the Presidency of the Exchange and I am particularly happy it has been achieved during the lifetime of one of its founding fathers, Pa Akintola Williams. In telling the story of how we have achieved this milestone, we recognise the efforts of several actors involved in this project – including the management and staff of The Exchange, our members, professional advisers, the Federal Government of Nigeria, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and other capital market stakeholders – without whom it could not have become a reality.”

Commenting on the successful outcomes at the meetings, Chief Executive Officer, NSE, Mr Oscar Onyema, said, “Today’s meetings move the demutualisation process significantly forward and the positive outcomes affirm the great interest from members to support the pivotal restructuring of the exchange to become globally competitive. In furtherance of our plans, we will move to file the necessary resolutions from the COM and all other required documents at the CAC and SEC, obtain the Court Order sanctioning of the Scheme, complete all necessary registrations and seek the final approval from the SEC to ultimately demutualise.”

Members of the NSE had approved the demutualisation scheme of The Exchange at an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) in March 2017. This was followed by the signing of the Demutualisation of The Nigerian Stock Exchange Bill into law in August 2018. In December 2019, the Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria (SEC) in a No Objection letter gave its consent to the NSE to hold the COM and EGM that would facilitate its conversion from a not-for-profit entity limited by guarantee into a profit-making, public limited liability company owned by shareholders.

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