SSFR to obtain dividends from Safaricom by dec

“This is an impressive development to us as stakeholders that now the share prices have gained and picked up,” Gaperi Despite rumours of significant losses made by the national pension body after buying a stake worth $7.6 million (Rwf4.3 billion) during Safaricom’s Initial Public Offering (IPO), the Social Security Fund of Rwanda (SSFR) is set to obtain dividends at the end of the month.

“This is an impressive development to us as stakeholders that now the share prices have gained and picked up,” Gaperi

Despite rumours of significant losses made by the national pension body after buying a stake worth $7.6 million (Rwf4.3 billion) during Safaricom’s Initial Public Offering (IPO), the Social Security Fund of Rwanda (SSFR) is set to obtain dividends at the end of the month.

This comes after Kenya’s biggest telecom company announced the registration of Rwf50.1 billion profit after taxes. Officials said recently that Safaricom, posted a 6.7 percent increase in profit after tax for the six months ending September 2009. 

SSFR’s Managing Director, Henry Gaperi, welcomed the news and said that the public pension body is expecting dividends from the telecom company at the end of this month and at the end of the financial year respectively.

The telecom’s profit before tax grew by 1.7 percent representing Rwf69.2 billion. It recorded double digit growth in revenue to Rwf308.3 billion although voice revenues only increased by 6.2 percent (to Rwf239.7 billion) because of the reduction in tariffs.

Gaperi disclosed that the telecom company is expected to make more profits than it did last year as it is indicated in the half year results report which was released to investors on Wednesday.

Safaricom faced economic difficulties as a result of Kenya’s post election violence which led to a decline in its share prices but Gaperi said that SSFR never sold it shares as most foreign shareholders sold off their shares because they had hope that the company share prices would pick up.

“This is an impressive development to us as stakeholders that now the share prices have gained and picked up,” he stated.

He also said that the public pension body is also expecting more dividends at the end of the year as the telecom giant is making more profits.

According to the telecom’s half year report, data revenues went up by 93.6 percent to Sh7.2 billion (Rwf54.3 billion) and the officials attributed the increase to the growth of broadband mobile services and the money transfer service, M-Pesa the company introduced in which September alone saw Sh22.5 billion (Rwf169.8 billion) transferred.

The officials credited the results to the roll out of innovative products and increased infrastructure investments which during the period stood at Sh8.5 billion (Rwf64.2 billion).

Officials in the telecom revealed to investors that they were now positioning themselves to be a big data operator and expect the segment to contribute about 25 percent of their revenues in the three years.

They also disclosed to them (Investors) that they were in the process of finalising the purchase agreement for the acquisition of a WiMAX service provider Packet Stream Data Network, which upon completion will allow Safaricom to roll out a national fixed data service.

The telecom giant owns 19.5 percent capacity in The East African Marine System (TEAMS) cable which is yet to be commercially launched in this month.

Ends

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