The Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) is set to relocate to its new offices in Westlands by the end of March, chief executive Peter Mwangi has said.
The securities exchange, which has been housed at the Nation Centre in Nairobi for the past two decades, has bought a multi-million shilling office complex in Westlands suburb, which is gaining popularity with businesses seeking space away from the congested central business district.
“The acquisition of the five-storey property is now complete. We expect to move within the first quarter of 2013,” said Mr Mwangi. “The relocation will be complete without any disruptions to market operations.”
According to disclosures on the NSE’s website, the bourse moved into Nation Centre in July 1994 at a time when there were only eight licensed brokers. The office complex is estimated to have cost the NSE Sh400 million, part of which could have been sourced from a financier.
Mr Mwangi said that the bourse has also set a target to self-list by mid this year, bringing to a close the demutualisation process that would conclude the change in legal form of the bourse from a mutually owned firm to a public company.
The NSE also plans to start listing of companies on the growth enterprise market segment (GEMS) and launch the of trading of real estate investment trusts (REITS) and asset backed securities (ABS) this year.
“We expect to relocate to our new home on 55 Westlands Road, to complete the self-listing which will formally conclude the demutualisation process, to welcome the first companies to list on GEMS, and to start trading in REITS and ABS,” he said.
Re-location to Westlands will see the NSE join a growing number of companies that have been leaving Nairobi’s central business district for Waiyaki Way and Upper Hill.
Already Barclays Bank has moved its headquarters to The West End on Waiyaki Way near Safaricom House. Others that have moved from the CBD include Equity Bank, Standard Chartered and Commercial Bank of Africa.
London-based exploration company Tullow Oil has taken up five floors of West End Towers on Waiyaki Way while PricewaterhouseCoopers has taken up occupancy at the Delta Corner.
British American Insurance Company is expanding its office space to cater for companies that are not looking to set up in the city centre.
The NSE will save on rent expenses by moving to Westlands and also lease out any extra space creating an additional source of income.
According to the its annual report for the period ended December 2011, it booked Sh19.2 million as operating lease rentals while its non-core business income, which includes data vending helped it post an after-tax profit of Sh85.6 million in 2011.
Its traditional income which includes transaction levies, listing and initial application fees rose by three per cent to Sh301.9 million from Sh292.7 million while other revenue rose by 21 per cent to Sh16.5 million from Sh13.65 million in 2010.