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Real estate and logistics firm Express Kenya set to exit Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE)

By Otiato Guguyu | December 5th 2017 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

NSE (Photo: Courtesy)

Real estate and logistics firm Express Kenya is set to exit the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) as the majority owner and Chief Executive Hector Diniz moves to buy out ordinary shareholders.

In a notice appearing in the newspapers yesterday, Mr Diniz, who owns shares in the company directly and through Etcoville Holdings Ltd, said he would take over the firm once he gets 28.36 per cent of the shareholding.

He is offering ordinary investors Sh5.50 for the shares that are currently trading at Sh3.75 with a total cap of Sh132.7 million.

“A special resolution of the shareholders of Express Kenya shall have been passed approving the de-listing of Express Kenya with such de-listing taking effect upon the Take-Over becoming unconditional,” Diniz said.

The deal will be brokered by Dyer and Blair, law firm Hamilton Harrison and Mathews and Diamond Trust Bank.

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Express Kenya ran into headwinds after it lost its main logistics business line with East Africa Breweries Ltd four years ago — forcing it to lease out its fleet and equipment.

The firm, which has consistently reported losses for the past three years, then tried to go into the real estate business, breaking ground to put up 224 residential houses on 3.5 acres in four high-rise blocks comprising one, two and three-bedroom houses for Sh2 billion.

In their annual report for 2015, the company admitted that they had been hit by roadblocks all the way.

“There have been twists and turns, which have led to massive delays in implementation as well as a delay in the turnaround time for the company’s cash-flow,” Diniz said.

After posting a loss of Sh31 million in the first half of last year, Express Kenya sought to sell off 6.72 acres of prime property after it fell into delays in setting up a real estate project.

Its troubled exit from the NSE follows the delisting of vehicle dealer Marshalls East Africa after Global Ltd, which owns 13.9 per cent stake in the auto dealer, decided to buy out retail shareholders.

Another firm, Access Kenya had its value eroded before it was acquired and subsequently delisted from the bourse while board room wars ate into the valuations of CMC Motors which was taken over by Dubai-based Al-Futtaim and was delisted.

African Lakes Corporation formerly Africa Online, and Unilever have also exited the Kenyan equities market.

Express Kenya Nairobi Securities Exchange Hector Diniz moves
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