The Government has urged residents in rural areas to invest in its sale of 19.81 per cent shares it holds in I&M Bank (Rwanda) Ltd.
The call was made during the ongoing I&M Bank IPO sale road show conducted in Kayonza and Ngoma Districts on Friday last week.
Edward Kabangura, a senior economist at the Ministry of Finance and economic planning, urged residents in the two districts to buy I&M shares pointing out that it presents an opportunity to diversify investments and prosper in the long run.
“You may be a businessperson or a farmer who relies on one source of revenue; however you have a chance to create yet another source of revenue if you invest in these shares,” he told the residents.
The residents welcomed the government’s move to sell its holding in private firms calling it another strategy to diversify investments and save for the future.
“It is an opportunity for me to save for my family’s future,” said Jean Pierre Habimana.
Officials from the Ministry of Finance, I&M Bank and Capital Market Authority, as well as brokers are currently traversing the country seeking potential buyers of the shares.
The idea, according to Kabangura, is to give a chance to every Rwandan, including those living in rural areas, to invest.
Both Government and I&M Bank last week agreed to extend the deadline of sale of government shares to March 10.
The sale of the shares was launched on February 14 and was initially set to close on March 3, 2017.
To give opportunity to everyone, government has decided to conduct the “I&M IPO roadshow” to give a chance to potential investors who have taken keen interest in the offer, Kabangura noted.
“We have been conducting roadshows across the country for the past four days and, so far, the response, especially from retail investors as well as cooperatives, has been encouraging,” Norbert Mwanangu, the Sales and Marketing Manager at I&M Bank Rwanda told The New Times.
The ministry says the sales pitch is mainly focused on the bank’s profitability, good corporate governance practices, firm regulatory framework for capital markets as well as the overall conducive environment.
“This should encourage everyone to come and invest,” Mwanangu, noted.
Charles Nyarwaya, a businessman from Ngoma District, pledged to buy shares but urged government and I&M Bank to sensitise the public on how the IPO works.
It is important for us to understand what this IPO business is about, the reality on ground is that not many Rwandans understand what this business means,” he noted.
Magnifique Migisha, from Capital Markets Authority, assured potential investors about the Bank’s financial health, noting that CMA would not have sanctioned the IPO if there were any issues.
Government expects to get Rwf8.9 billion from the sale of its stake in I&M Bank Rwanda.
The proceeds will be invested in infrastructure projects, including the construction of Bugesera International Airport.