Listing in the stock exchange market helps companies to increase their capital and expand their businesses, a property expert and also Manager Director of Prime Time has said. Sandy Kelly was speaking as one of the panellists at the recent listing conference organised by Botswana Stock Exchange. He told multitudes of delegates that being part of BSE has created a new business in the property market, as there is a pipeline for new investments in the company. “Listing has created a good value for the property business. We had an alternative to remain private and grow slowly so we decided to become a public entity by listing in Botswana Stock Exchange and this has been very profitable to us. However listing was never in my plans,” said Kelly. He explained that listing has created new businesses. “Listing was never my plans what we have done is that we have created a new business in terms of property asset management. Because we are the property investment company, we had an alternative of selling the property to the pension fund but this was going to result in slow growth,” said Kelly.
By listing in the stock exchange Kelly said they have grown Prime Time business from 175 million worth of assets to P800 million worth of assets. “We have listed to grow our capital and access more funds. If you know what you are doing you will gain more returns from the business,” he said. Kelly pointed out that among the challenges of listing includes strict regulations by Botswana Stock Exchange. “After listing there is a bit of slow for us to make adjustments in the company because you have to go to them every time you need to go to them, that’s a restriction,” said Kelly. He said listing in other markets will be determined by their performance in other countries. “Currently we have not yet planned to list in other markets but this will be determined by our property in Zambia which is still under construction. If the performance is satisfactory we will list in Zambia Stock Exchange,” said Kelly.
He said Prime Time properties in Gaborone are performing satisfactorily. PrimeTime currently owns the Sebele and South Ring shopping malls in Gaborone, Nswazwi mall in Francistown as well as shopping centres in Ghanzi, Lobatse, Serowe and Ramotswa. PrimeTime now owns three buildings within Prime Plaza in the CBD comprised of Barclays House, Marula House and CEDA House. Kelly said the Prime Plaza location had attracted an equal calibre of tenants with Cresta, Stockbrokers Botswana, South Africa Express Airline and GIZ already renting out at Marula House. Prime Time portfolio stood at P764 million by the end of August 2015, which is an increase of four percent. Prime Time is currently in the process of completing the sale of two properties in Francistown - Blue Jacket Square and Barclays Plaza - to Botswana Public Officers Pension Fund (BPOPF) at a cost of P71 million. However Kelly said while these properties have “proved to be cash cows,” their impact on growth is likely to be limited going forward. Speaking during the Botswana Stock Exchange listings conference, RDC Properties Managing Director Guido Giachetti said listing in the stock exchange is an opportunity for business growth but expanding into other African countries is a challenge due to political issues and currency ratios. G4S Managing Director Michael Kampani said primary listing in Botswana Stock Exchange is limiting as there are lot of regulations and this discourages start-up companies.
“Abiding to Botswana Stock Exchange regulations limits most companies and this hinders expansion to other African countries,” said Kampani.