Category Archives: NSE stockbrokers

5 ways to protect your NSE shares from irregular sales

We all hope the days of collapsing stockbrokers at the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE) are now a thing at the past. However new share offering such as Britak, Family Bank and Bank of Kigali, and other personal finance initiatives such as the I’m a Cooperator movement are likely to convert some people into first time share buyers. So how does one ensure that their funds are not misused by an errant stockbroker or their employees? Read on

A guest post by Shiroh
While it takes a lot of sweat to save for investments, many investors have found themselves in a tricky situation when unscrupulous dealers engage in irregular sale of their shares. While this practice cannot be tolerated for all involved, it is important that one takes proactive steps to avoid losing your investments. These can include;

1. Subscribing to the Central Depository System Alert Service: The mobile phone has truly revolutionized many industries in Kenya. For a nominal amount of Kshs. 10, one can receive alerts to their mobile phone anytime a transaction is made from their CDSC account. For more details, check the CDSC Kenya website.

2. Freezing activity on CDS Account: Since getting mobile phone may not be possible for people residing abroad, freezing any activity on a CDSC account can be done. These instructions are communicated to the CDSC and activity can only resume at the request of the account holder.

3. Constantly monitoring your activity of your account at your preferred Stockbroker. Many people don’t bother to check the activity of their accounts once they make the investments only to get a shock of their lives when they want to liquidate them. A broker is under obligation to provide investors with a statement of account through which they can monitor the movement of their investments.

4. Developing a personal relationship with a dealer or broker. While some personal relationships work to the detriment of the investor, sometimes having a specific person who can address any enquiries that you have can be a great plus.

5. Finally, you should report any fraudulent sale of shares to the Complaint Handling Unit of the NSE.

Award Season

Capital Market Awards: These took place late in January 2011 and were organized by Think Business who also organize awards for the banking and insurance industry. The awards gained notoriety when they started a few years ago when the regulator capital markets authority (CMA Kenya) complained about their implied association /endorsement as a result of the name.

Some of the winners this year included;
Custodian of the year: KCB
Bond deal of the year: Housing Finance
Stockbroker of the year: Genghis Capital
Fund manager of the year: Genesis Kenya
Legal transaction advisors: Hamilton Harrison & Matthews
Unit trust: British American (which was launched 5 years ago)
Research team: Kestrel capital
Lead transaction advisor: Dyer & Blair
Investment bank of the year: Dyer & Blair

D & B director Jimnah Mbaru mentioned that they had used Hamilton Harris & Matthew in most of their deals, and had been represented in several deals including NIC (Uganda), Bralirwa (Rwanda), CRDB (Tanzania) and the largest was KPLC in Kenya which was a complex deal. He added that its not just technical know-how that wins them deals (everyone had talented transaction employees) but it’s a more about relationship management and understanding people, politics, social economic (and that many runners up had recruited staff from D&B). But he also spent 5 minutes telling what looked like it was going to be a very funny accounting or golf joke, only that it turned out to be one everyone knows as it ends with a lawyer answering ‘how much do you want 2 + 2 to add up to?’

The CMA awards were mostly deserved, but there are a few glitches that were evident:

– The organizers insisting on presenting awards (best performing NSE company won by British American Tobacco) that were not voted or verified by the auditors (who stated this before the award was given)
– Some categories listed had no entries (IPO of year, Chairman of year, PR transaction advisor), or two winners in same category (CEO of the year shared by Nasim Devji and Martin Oduor Otieno) and some prizes winners not showing up.

Other Awards up for grabs
Poptech: Nominate a Poptech Social Innovation Fellow
Property Awards: Organized by Property Expo Kenya, these take place on February 24 at Sarit centre and will award property developer of the year, real estate agency of the year, mortgage company of the year and real estate journalist of the year

Other Media Awards include
– Diageo Africa Business Reporting Awards
– East African media awards by East Africa Business Council

Online Share Trading in Kenya

Tonight CFC Stanbic Financial Services launched online share trading which they say is the first online share trading platform in the country. The actual ceremony was conducted by Information Permanent Secretary Bitange Ndemo (a Mumias shareholder through CSFS) who noted that while Diaspora Kenyans remitted $2 billion per year, they hand no true seamless mechanism to buy shares – until now.

It’s a light-weight system accessible to CSFS customers to make trade orders – buy, sell, cancel, monitor volumes, settlements, & trade live at the Nairobi Stock Exchange in real time as well as get statements & portfolio valuations.

Disclaimer: I’ve been a long-term investor through CSFS primarily through e-mailing trades, and this has been quite satisfactory. Enabling online share trading is a service which several brokers have promoted, but delivery has been spotty. The CSFS system is available even on Smartphones,and while SMS and mobile money are not highlighted, these will be features to push for and the service is one to try out and see.

Kenya Stockbrokers 2009 Financial Summary

Like at the end of august when they started providing their interim unaudited results Kenya’s stockbrokers and investment banks have continued with this now, and thanks to the CMA/regulator they have largely gone ahead and published their full year audited accounts for 2009 by the March 31 deadline.

Investments Banks: Best were Kestrel Capital (income of 148m and profit of 24m), Standard IB (income 121m, profit 40m) and Afrika IB (income 40m, profit 20m). Shock was CFC Stanbic Financial Services (CSFS) with a basket of income form brokerage, advisory, fund management and interest totaling 137m but still lost 108m after paying salaries of 123m highest in the industry. The same was seen at Renaissance (Income of 113m, lost -147m after paying 106m salaries) Equity IB looks like a mi-step for Equity Bank (high profile staff hires have since departed) and it had virtually no income (6.7m unrealized investments), and lost -57m in 2009. The disclosure separating client cash from bank cash are illuminating, and one can see that IB’s all have high debtors and creditors, resulting in some like Dyer & Blair carrying overdraft positions and the 44m paid in financial costs contributed to the -88m loss. Best off directors are Kestrel, Renaissance, Genesis and overall of the 19, ½ lost money

Stockbrokers Best was Genghis with income of 31 million and broke even with a ½ million profit while, Reliance, and newcomers NIC Capital, Kingdom and ABC Capital all lost money. Ngenye Kariuki did not file as it was placed under statutory management. Most of the five remaining stockbrokers have 251 million in intangible assets to prop up their balance sheets (which range from about 300 to 450 million) and significant amounts of receivables.

Fund managers: best was Stanbic Investments with income of 398m and profit of 124m, and then Genesis with income of 126m and profit of 31m then Co-Op Trust with profit of 19m. Other higher income earners, but who lost cash in the year included AIG income of 192m (lost -46m), British American Asset Managers 122m (-38m), Old Mutual Investment Group 168m (-5m) and Old Mutual Assets Managers 150m (-35m). Overall of the 14 asset managers, 50% were profitable including Aureos, Co-Op Trust, ICEA Asset Managers, Investeq while Stanchart and Zimele just about broke even. Unit Trusts Old Mutual Investment Group 7.6 billion (5 funds), BAAM funds manger about 5.7 billion (5 funds) , African Alliance (IB) 1.4 billion (5 funds), ICEA 782 million (3 funds, Stanchart 303m (2 funds), and Zimele 390m (2 funds), Dyer & Blair IB 50m (2 funds), Standard IB 11m (3 funds) Fund managers recently formed their own fund managers association lobby group separating themselves from KASIB for stockbrokers and investment banks.

Investment advisors: only one left is Tsavo after Dry has converted into an investment bank and Jani have withdrawn their license. Tsavo had commission income of 13m and a profit of 6m

Conclusion: The pictures has not been pretty, but this painful period of disclosures will hopefully lead to an improvement of their governance and management to stop the pattern of having one stockbroker collapsing every year by highlighting issues of high receivables and payables, insider borrowing, directors pay etc.

With the improved activity at the stock market in 2010, the pattern should be better than what they reported. This is a good time for IPO’s and for companies to raise funds 2010-2011 for reasons known elsewhere and this will benefit the stockbrokers who will perhaps have a better 2010 than 2009.

Tech Moment: Nairobi iHub for Innovation and more

iHub Nairobi: Our fabulous friends at Ushahidi are in the news for their recent technological endeavors which have been used in earthquakes rescue & relief in Haiti and Chile. But back here in Kenya, is something even more momentous, which is the unveiling & launch of the Nairobi iHub on March 3 2010.

It’s the culmination of many months of talks, visualizing the concept to plan, searching for appropriate buildings and finally the hard work of transforming an empty room to an innovation hub via teams of volunteers, advisers, and technicians while side-stepping others who were already hogging the free internet. Congratulations!

Other Tech Events in Nairobi this month:

The Pan Africa Media Conference from18-19 March 2010, a rather top heavy conference (lots of Current & Ex African presidents and leaders) but which has interesting speakers and panelists like Dr. Mo Ibrahim, H.H. the Aga Khan, Chris Kabwato (Highway Africa) Guy Berger (Rhodes University SA), Rose Kimotho (MD Kameme FM), Ory Okolloh (Ushahidi) Matthew Buckland (Media 24), Patrick Quarcoo (Radio Africa) and a talk on New Media – the possibilities, limits, and risks offered by blogs, SMS, MMS, social networks.

The Kenya ICT Board has
– A meeting for mobile developers (follow up from #MWEA10) on March 2
– BPO/ITES Centre of Excellence on March 4
– Tandaa Symposium on Local Digital Content on March 8

The ICANN Nairobi conference takes place from 7-12 March 2010.

The Nairobi 1% event takes place on March 12.

The Institute of Software Technologies launch their new brand, IT training center, and premises on March 11.

E-Fraud News: The Business Daily has a write up today about Kenyan banks combating fraud to protect their customers even as they roll out new technology channels for their customers to access more convenienct services from the banks.

In the blog world there have been some recent tales of e-fraud and bank fraud:

Room Thinker received the latest 411 letter from Tim Geithner at the US Department of Treasury
Wanjiku lost some money through old fashioned inter bank transfer
Idd Salim warned of the dangers of SMS banking fraud as a ticking time bomb warning that SMS can be intercepted on its way from your phone to telecom, changed & edited, delayed, deflected & even deleted before it ever gets to bank.
Gmeltdown writes about a recent mpesa fraud> and there’s even a related facebrook group but thankfully this is very rare occurrence among the millions of Mpesa customers.

You don’t know my name: Seems I spoke to soon in lamenting registrars mistreating retail investors in a bid to clean up their records, cut fraud, and authenticate investor information. My own stockbroker CFCStanbic (formerly CFCFS) wants the same of me, asking via an ominous warning letter, about Know Your Customer requirements, that (after about 5 years of trading through them) to confirm my identity as an individual. I’m as an individual supposed to provide copies my documents (CDS account opening form, my ID, 2 colour photos, PIN copy, utility bill, bank statement or pay/slip which will be certified by their panel of lawyers). There are also additional requirements for partnerships, informal groups, trust accounts, accounts for minors (birth certificate & parents ID’s) sole proprietors, foreign corporate, companies and Diaspora investors (certified passports, photos, utility bills, bank/c.card statement)

Compliance with the new KYC will enable me to continue transactions with them after March 31, but there’s’ no mention of what will happen if there’s no compliance by the March 26 2010 deadline.