Markets

CMA approves Unaitas Sacco’s share offer

Traders at the Nairobi Stock Exchange. Photo/FILE
Traders at the Nairobi Stock Exchange. Photo/FILE 

The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has given approval for investors who applied for shares in a botched capital raising offer by Muramati Sacco, now re-named Unaitas Sacco, to be admitted as members of the co-operative.

The approval will offer the investors a window to either accept admission as members of the savings and credit co-operative (Sacco) or a chance to reject participation in the share offer and get a refund of their cash.

Muramati had in late 2010 set out to raise up to Sh200 million from members of the Sacco and even non-members, but was adjudged by the market regulator to have breached regulations which bar firms from raising capital from the general public without CMA’s approval.

A disclosure document seen by the Business Daily shows that the Sacco had already raised Sh65 million, when the share offer was stopped.

About Sh34 million of the amount was raised from existing shareholders and Sh31.1 million from non-members.

“Regularisation was approved for inviting investors to join the Sacco,” chief executive Tony Mwangi told the Business Daily.

The funds had been kept in an escrow account pending CMA’s investigations into the share offer.

Muramati contracted transaction advisors Faida Investment Bank to prepare disclosure documents which were approved by the CMA in June.

Njonjo, Okello and Associates are the legal advisors, PKF Kenya are the reporting accountants and financial advisors while Muramati Sacco Society Limited are the registrars.

The disclosure document on the public offer says that the CMA has regularised the offer which in effect allows non-members who participated in the October-December 2010 public offer the opportunity to confirm whether to take up or reject the shares they applied for.

Allocation is expected to be completed by August 27, announcements of the results to take place four days later and if there are refunds to be paid by September 7.

The disclosure document shows that by the end of 2010 Muramati had Sh2.1 billion in assets and Sh176 million in share capital.

“This will give Muramati Sacco Society Ltd the authority to use the money invested to fund expansion plans,” says the disclosure document.

The additional cash was to be used for expansion, which included the opening of seven branches, revamping the IT infrastructure, boosting capitalisation and corporate rebranding.

This is part of the Sacco’s three-year strategic plan. Despite the CMA halt, the Sacco has continued with its expansion plan which includes enlisting new members.

Joining the Sacco requires the purchase of at least 100 shares at Sh10 each, which boosts the Sacco’s capitalisation. Mr Mwangi could not to confirm specific numbers but said that since 2010 total membership had crossed 100,000.

“What I can confirm is that between 2010 and now our membership more doubled, that is an assurance,” said Mwangi.

By the end of 2010 it had 27,239 shareholders, serving 86,000 customers and had loaned out Sh473 million.

The disclosure document says that membership and in effect shareholding had been growing at a 30 per cent annual rate but this is expected to accelerate from next year.

“We want to double what we would have by the end of this year in 2013,” said Mr Mwangi.

In 2010 it made Sh13.2 million in net profits, up from Sh6.16 the previous tea or 114 per cent increase.

Unaitas is targeting the micro and small and mid-size enterprises in additional to the middle and low-income market.

Kenyan Saccos have been growing but high interest rates have decelerated growth.

Last week Sacco Societies Regulatory Authority Chief Executive Officer Carilus Ademba said that as at the end of last year Saccos could not satisfy a demand for loans of between Sh30 billion and Sh40 billion because of inadequate of funds.

“A number of people who applied for loans were not successful because there was no liquidity,” he said.
jgachiri@ke.nationmedia.com