NAIROBI, Kenya, May 9 – A ban on trading of KenolKobil shares at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) has been extended indefinitely.
This follows an announcement by oil marketer that its majority shareholders intended to sell their stocks to international giant Puma Energy.
In a cautionary notice sent to the NSE, KenolKobil said the main shareholders had signed an exclusive agreement with Puma Energy for sale of the majority stake in the publicly listed company.
“Until details of the takeover are made clear, the regulator can suspend shares under section 22(b) of the Capital Markets Securities regulation,” said Carol Karugu Investor Relations and Communications Manager for the NSE.
The provision allows the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) to suspend trading if a listed company has a significant restructuring involving the listed securities such as in the process of acquisition, mergers or takeovers.
KenolKobil’s stock was stopped on Tuesday, but the NSE had said trading would resume on Wednesday.
Trading in the shares was then subsequently put off indefinitely.
The oil marketer’s valuation for March 2012 stood at Sh17.00, which slipped to Monday’s price of Sh12.70.
Analysts from Standard Investment Bank Research Department estimate the shares on offer to Puma Energy represent between 60 to 70 percent of total issued shares.
“Pinpointing the exact amount remains a challenge due to fragmentation of ownership across the top five shareholders, though the single largest shareholder has a 24.91 percent stake, it is widely believed that the top four holders with a combined 61.8 percent stake are affiliated,” they added.
Puma Energy is a subsidiary of Trafigura, the third largest petroleum trading company in the world which has interests in oil, coal and shipping among others.
Puma Energy is already operating in a number of countries in Sub Saharan Africa where it is trading in the middle and downstream markets.
If Puma is successful in acquiring KenolKobil that has a strong presence in East and Central Africa, it will add another 400 stations and 10 countries to its operations portfolio.