Tuesday, October 27, 2020

BTCL shares nudge up

The share price of the telecommunications giant, BTCL went up by 1.8 percent by end of this week to close at 112 thebe per share following a recent downward trend. The leap comes shortly a week after the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) lifted the trading halt on the BTCL shares. Last week Friday, BTCL announced that it will yield to some of the demands by its employees who are also part shareholders to have them own shares directly.

In a statement that shook the capital markets, particularly the BTCL share price, the recently listed telecommunications giant cautioned that it intends altering the terms of its Employee Share Trust in order to establish an Employee Share Ownership Plan.

“The objective of the alteration is to permit BTCL employees to directly own BTCL shares and permit them full voting and profit participation rights, together with the ability to buy and sell BTCL shares generally, as distinct to the limited ownership rights in terms of the original Trust,” read part of the statement.

During the same week, government diverted some funds raised by the company from the capital markets through an IPO which were meant to aid the expansion of the now publicly owned company.

At a small occasion held late last week, senior minister at the Office of the President (OP), Eric Molale received a huge cheque of P212 million from Barclays Bank Botswana which is part of the P462 million collected during the BTCL Initial Public Offering (IPO) period. Barclays Bank Botswana, which was appointed the “receiving” bank during the IPO offer period also handed BTCL with the remaining P250 million which is expected to help grow the company.

Fast forward to this week, BSE data shows that by close of markets on Friday, BTCL was the major trade counter, exchanging 58 percent of the total trades following a successful Initial Public Offering (IPO) a few weeks ago.

The BTCL IPO saw an unprecedented majority of offers made by individuals, with over 90 percent of the 462,000,000 accepted offers received from individuals and citizen owned companies. The balance was received from institutional investors, who drove the IPO to an oversubscription status.

Meanwhile the company late this week rubbished media reports indicating internal squabbles within the telecommunications giant.

“There are no internal squabbles at the organisation and BTCL is not in crisis”, said company secretary Kaelo Radira in a communiqu├® circulated late last week. 

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The Telegraph October 28

Digital edition of The Telegraph, October 28, 2020.