How Airtel Africa investors lost N556bn in one day

Bisola David
Bisola David
Airtel Africa to sell 20% Ugandan subsidiary stake via IPO 

Airtel Africa Plc, one of the largest telecoms companies listed on the Nigerian Exchange Group Plc, suffered a loss of around N556 billion at the end of Wednesday’s trading session as the domestic market continued under sell pressure.

Nairametrics reported that the benchmark index completed the trading day at 53,018.97 points as the market continued its losing streak for a fourth session in a row.

The telecom stock decreased by no more than 10% to close at N1,331.10 per share, down from the opening price of N1,479.00 from the previous day’s trading.

Subsequent investigation showed that Airtel Africa lost N556 billion (or 10%) during the day’s trading since its market capitalization on the Nigerian Exchange ended at N5.002 trillion as opposed to N5.558 trillion when trading started.

The drop in stock prices can be linked to investors’ negative outlook, which was influenced by the disputed general election result for 2023.

The election, which many people believed to have fallen short of expectations, is also having an impact on stock prices as investors, primarily international ones, are staying away from Nigerian equities, according to managing director of Crane Securities Ltd., Mr. Mike Eze.

Eze added that foreign investors are also experiencing panic sales as a result of election jitters.

The benchmark index fell by 1.88% to close at 53,018.97 points, the lowest level since 30 January, as trading operations on the floor of the Nigerian Exchange Limited brought the day’s trading to a poor conclusion.

Analysts believe that the index is headed for another week of losses as a result of the dip. Regarding market activity, the poor performance was caused by selloffs in index heavyweights, including telecom heavyweight Airtel Africa Plc, which suffered a loss of -10.00%. This was offset by gains in Zenith Bank Plc, which saw a gain of +1.39%, GTCO Plc, which saw a gain of +0.41%, and Lafarge Africa, which saw a growth of +0.78%.

The market capitalization lost N553.71 billion to close at N28.88 trillion, while the year-to-date return decreased to 3.45%.

An additional examination of the day’s market activity revealed that trade turnover ended up being lower than it had been during the previous session, with the value of transactions falling by 12.78%.

3,506 transactions totaling 197.33 million shares worth N2.67 billion were completed. UBA led the volume chart with 64.20 million units traded and Airtel Africa led the value chart with deals worth N536.80 million although UBA had a gain of 0.00%.

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