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This week shares opened at 57 percent more than the price Africa Insurance Company S.C floated to the general public only a few weeks ago.
Reports indicated that the prices of the new share bid which opened around two weeks ago was on average 35 percent higher. The price for one share initially is 1,000 birr. The insurance firm official stated that one individual offered a 57 percent higher price per share to be a shareholder of Africa Insurance.
“There were several people offering high bids to own a share of the insurance firm,” Kiros Jiranie, CEO of African Insurance, told Capital. According to the CEO many bidders offered between 25 and 40 percent.
In total, 57 bidders participated. The lowest offer was 10 percent higher than the original price of 1,000 birr for a single share.
Kiros explained that the total amount offered by the 57 bidders is over 70 million birr, but the insurance firm only floated the bid for 30 million birr worth of ordinary shares which total 30,000.
Because it is not a financial firm this bid was not expected to be as strong.
Currently, the financial business is very attractive with its high margin of profit per share. The financial institutions registered from 30 to 50 percent profit per share based on recent experiences. Economic analysts said that this kind of huge profit margin is exceptional compared with other countries’ experience. “The financial sector in Ethiopia is very lucrative,” these experts said.
In the past fiscal year Africa Insurance has registered 40 percent earnings per share based on its unaudited record.
A year ago the insurance firm decided to increase the subscribed capital from 60 million birr to 180 million birr, which will be fully attained in the current fiscal year.
Kiros said that some of the bidders have offered to own the maximum share that one individual can own. According to the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE), the financial institutions’ regulatory body, proclamation one share holder can only hold five percent of a financial institution’s capital.
With this concept in mind one shareholder can own 9 million birr worth of share at African Insurance, which expanded its capital to 180 million birr.
The CEO said that the insurance board will endorse the final approval of the proposal submitted by the board’s subcommittee in the coming week.
“Based on the past year’s general assembly agreement we will only accept 30 million birr worth of shares,” he added.
The main aim of the current share float is to expand the number of shareholders and to meet the growing capital volume target.
Africa Insurance, which is considered one of the oldest private insurance firms since the free market was introduced in the 1990s, earned 42 million birr in gross profits during the 2013/14 fiscal year, which is unaudited.
In the 2012/13 fiscal year the insurance firm registered 30.7 million birr in profits before tax. The current year’s achievement registered about 35 percent growth compared with the performance last year. The performance makes the insurance firm one of the strongest private insurance firms in the country.