London Stock Exchange Cross-Border Hot Spot for African Companies

By Makula Dunbar Published: March 24, 2014, 6:22 pm

SMEs with natural resource foundations — as well as companies based on African markets — are increasingly flocking to list on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) in an effort to raise capital, a How We Made It In Africa report said.

The continent’s minerals are being explored now more than ever.  In 2013, initial public offerings (IPO) for companies supporting Africa’s gold, potash, oil, gas and other resources popped up on the LSE at over twice the rate of those in 2012.

This data is based on the research of Baker & McKenzie, a global law firm highlighted in the How We Made It In Africa report.

According to Amar Budarapu, chair of Baker & McKenzie’s global securities practice group, raising capital overseas is a growing a successful practice for emerging markets and African companies:

“[Companies] are… no longer limiting capital-raising options solely to their home jurisdictions. Issuers and investment banks are increasingly weighing the often substantial benefits of listing abroad.”

While IPO launches abroad are on the rise, How We Made It In Africa further reported that IPO offerings across Africa’s stock exchanges are likely to heighten this year.

“The question is going to be where that capital flows to. London, Hong Kong and New York remain the global financial centers of choice for now, but they face increasing competition from emerging regional hubs such as Johannesburg for sub-Saharan Africa and Dubai for the Middle East,” Budarapu continued.

Although a current notable practice, building a presence within London’s financial market isn’t necessarily new for Africa’s companies. According to the official LSE website, Africa’s enterprises have been experiencing growth in London for more than 60 years.

In turn, London has been recruiting African company listing by exhibiting at African conferences — including Cape Town’s Indaba Mining Conference since 2005.




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