Ethiopian Securities Exchange Attracts Foreign Investors

Ethiopian Securities Exchange (ESX) is attracting both domestic and foreign investors in line with its capital-raising objectives. Siinqee Bank recently became the second equity acquirer after Zemen Bank, with other investors also showing interest.

ESX, established as a share company by the government and private sector, aims to limit government ownership to twenty-five percent but may increase it if private sector interest is insufficient. Key players such as Ethiopian Shipping and Logistics, Ethio Telecom, and others have committed as initial investors. ESX has actively engaged in roadshows and aims to launch the secondary market by year-end. Foreign investors, including FSD Africa, are also involved. Individual investors are welcome, with minimum investment set at Birr 10 million. ESX forecasts substantial revenue growth, aiming to turn a profit by 2028. Anticipated members include financial institutions, brokers, and investors, with EIH overseeing major public firms, including Ethiopian Airlines Group and Commercial Bank of Ethiopia.

Zemen Bank became the first private entity to secure an agreement with ESX by investing Birr 47.5 million to acquire a 5% ownership share. This fulfills the minimum requirement set by ESX for investors as of January 11, 2024. The move is part of ESX’s goal to raise a total of Birr 625 million, with recent support from state-owned enterprises and FSD Africa. More banks and private investors in Ethiopia are expected to follow suit in the coming months.

Foreign and domestic investors can purchase 75% of the shares of ESX while the rest of the ownership goes to the Ethiopian Government through Ethiopian Investment Holdings.

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