Capital Markets

NSE turns to Safaricom platform to boost stock trades


Nairobi Securities Exchange CEO Geoffrey Odundo. PHOTO | NMG

Safaricom’s #ticker:SCOM internet plan will save stockbrokers nearly a third of their costs and offer a secure network for traders.

The Nairobi Securities Exchange #ticker:NSE has tapped the telco as it upgrades its trading platform to provide a virtual network software that links it, the Central Depository and Settlement Corporation (CDSC) and traders.

NSE is replacing the Multi-Protocol Label Switching network that has been used since 2011 with the Software-defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) supported by Safaricom.

“The network interconnects the NSE, the Central Depository and Settlement Corporation and all the trading participants in the market to offer higher trading platform availability,” NSE CEO Geoffrey Odundo said on Friday.

“The SD-WAN will be transformational for the market as it will reduce connectivity costs to the brokers by approximately 30 per cent, ensure higher uptime and performance and increase network security,” he added.

NSE is keen on increasing market activity to spur the bourse which has suffered a multiyear decline due to the impact of coronavirus pandemic.

The sharp decline in the stocks market has been pushed by foreign investors who rushed to sell off their exposures in emerging markets wiping out billions of paper wealth by Kenyan investors.

According to the Capital Markets Authority quarterly bulletin, volumes traded decreased by 24.85 per cent to 969.57 million in the three months to December 2020 compared to 1,290.12 million in quarter four 2019.

“Equity turnover for quarter four of 2020 stood at Sh27.51 billion, compared to Sh45.01 billion registered in quarter four of 2019; a 38.88 per cent decrease confirming a decrease in investor participation at the bourse,” CMA Director, Regulatory Policy & Strategy Luke Ombara said.

End month market capitalisation recorded an eight per cent decrease to Sh2.3 trillion registered in December last year from Sh2.5 trillion at the end of 2019.