Listed investments firm TransCentury has disclosed it is planning to delist from the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE),a move that could put the troubled company out of its misery.
In a cautionary statement, Company Secretary Virginia Ndunge outlined delisting from the bourse as the top agenda for the upcoming Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM).
“In line with ongoing strategic initiatives by the company, all the issued ordinary shares of the company comprising 375,202,766 shares of par value Ksh 0.50 each shall be de-listed from the official list of the Alternative Investment Market Segment of the NSE,” said Ms. Ndunge.
The cracks have been there. In June, TransCentury said that it would delay releasing its audited financial statements for the year ended 31 December 2019 and attributed the hold up to the then yet to be completed audit of its subsidiary, East African Cables Plc.
The firm further advised shareholders and investors to exercise caution when dealing with the company’s shares
” We are advising shareholders and the investing public that TC has commenced a process that may result in material changes in the company’s listing status,” Ms. Ndunge said in the cautionary statement.
The completion of the process is subject to regulatory and shareholder approvals.
Transcentury was founded by Former President Mwai Kibaki’s friends Zephania Mbugua, Eddy Njoroge and the late James Gachui.
At the peak of its powers, TransCentury was a darling to investors and was one of the most profitable companies at the NSE.
In 2004, when the Kenyan stock market was vibrant, TransCentury shares of NSE-listed East African Cables shot from Ksh12 to an all time high of Ksh614.
Following the abrupt rise in share prices, shareholders approved a share-split in 2006 of 10 to 1 adding more cash to the company.
But a series of poor investment decisions sank the company. One of those decisions was to acquire a 20% stake in Rift Valley Railways (RVR) as part of Sheltam Railways,a South African consortium that controversially won a bid to operate the Kenya- Uganda railway for 25 years.
Today, the stock has since tanked incurring losses of billions of shillings in shareholders wealth.
The company also owes a flurry of lenders who have little hope of recouping their cash from the struggling company.