Local investors snap up Sh11b more KCB shares

NSE Market watch board. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Local investors have bought an additional Sh11.36 billion KCB shares in two years to March 2022, cutting foreigners’ stake to 10.77 per cent.

KCB’s regulatory filings show that local individual and institutional investors, including the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) had between March 2020 to last month added 267.3 million shares to tighten their grip on the regional lender.

Foreigners have in this period sold 267.3 million shares — the same as what locals have added — meaning Kenyans capitalised on the exit of foreigners to raise their stake.

KCB shares closed Monday averaging Sh42.50 apiece.

This means the additional shares are currently valued at Sh11.36 billion at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE).

But local investors may have spent more than Sh11.36 billion to get the shares given that KCB at one point touched a high of Sh50.75 in the last 52 weeks.

The purchases gave Kenyans an 89.23 per cent stake by the end of March, while that of foreigners dipped to 10.77 per cent.

The exit of foreigners gave room for locals to deepen their shareholding in an environment of falling prices.

KCB filings show that 678 foreign investors are left in the bank after 47 exited in the last two years to March.

An additional 43 local institutional investors have bought KCB shares to take their number to 6,631, while that of local individual shareholders has risen by 473 to hit 185,969.

Local institutional investors now command a 43.38 per cent stake followed by local individuals (26.09 per cent), National Treasury (19.76 per cent) and National Social Security Fund (NSSF) with 8.39 per cent.

NSSF between March 2020 and March 2022 added 43.39 million shares — currently valued at Sh1.84 billion to increase its stake from 7.03 per cent two years ago.

The current shareholding structure, coming on the back of foreigners ditching equities for low-risk investments to avoid erosion of their wealth, differs sharply from that of the end of 2017 when foreigners were the top shareholders in KCB with a stake of 29.21 per cent.


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