Letshego Namibia’s Initial Public Offering (IPO) will close this Friday, 22 September, with thousands of people already expressing interest in buying the shares.
Letshego is selling 20 percent (100 million shares) of its shares in the company worth N$470 million. The shares are being offered at N$4.70 per share.
The company has set aside 5 million shares for Government employees and Letshego staff, who will get preferential finance from the company to acquire the shares.
The minimum number of shares one can purchase is 200. The public offer opened on 25 August.
Letshego Holdings Namibia (LHN) opened its doors in 2002 as Edu Loan Namibia, providing consumer and micro-lending services. LHN is 85 percent owned by Letshego Holdings Limited, a Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) listed entity and Kumwe Investment Holdings of Namibia (15 percent).
LHL is the largest indigenous Botswana Stock Exchange company, with a current market capitalisation in excess of US$450 million.
The Windhoek Observer’s Chamwe Kaira (CK) asked Letshego Namibia CEO, Ester Kali (EK), about the how the IPO has performed so far.
CK: How many people have expressed interest in buying shares so far?
EK: We are unable to share the exact number of shares that have been offered at this stage, but what we can say is that thousands of Namibians have come forward and submitted their offers. Indeed, offers have come from all corners of Namibia and by that, we are truly humbled.
CK: Are you confident of selling the 100 million shares shares?
EK: One certainly cannot predict or guarantee what the final figures will be. That being said, we set ourselves a benchmark of what we hope to achieve, and the focus for us is really on ensuring that we see maximum citizen participation, with a focus on Previously Disadvantaged Namibians. This is what we are working towards in these final days until the offer closes, and we are comfortable with the progress being made.
CK: What has been the response from ordinary Namibians?
EK: The response from people across Namibia has been extraordinary. We are confident in this being a strong investment opportunity from an institutional investor perspective.
What is exceptional for us, however, is seeing how Namibians are so receptive to learning about a new opportunity for investment; this includes individual Namibians from all corners of the country. Through platforms such as our nationwide community roadshow, which aims to reach in excess of 75,000 people, we believe we are making great headway.
Our aim was to engage as many people from various walks of life, including the average man and woman on the street, and we are doing this through every engagement. We are seeing people from well outside the urban areas of Namibia take time to learn, hear about Letshego Namibia, and invest savings into buying Letshego Namibia shares. Some are looking to invest in their sons and daughters, and the stories they share are nothing short of heart-warming. We look forward to welcoming them as new shareholders in this great business.
CK: What final appeal do you have to Namibians?
EK: We have only a short time left in the offer period, before the deadline (end of business, Friday, September 22nd) by which Namibians must submit their offers to buy shares. We want to encourage interested investors to read the prospectus, make sure they understand this opportunity, and ensure they submit on time. This is a great opportunity and we do not want to leave anybody behind. This is the spirit of Ekwafo Letu.