Sacos first local firm to sign up for listing


22-April-2013

Trop-X, the Seychelles Securities Exchange, announced that the Sacos Group Ltd (Seychelles Registered Company # 820521-1) has signed a letter of engagement with Constant Capital, a Trop-X registered Sponsor Advisor, for listing on the Exchange in July 2013.

“While Trop-X was given the green light by the Securities Authority in November last year, companies have been waiting for a number of legislative amendments to be enacted before committing to listing timeframes; these include amendments to the Companies Ordinance, 1972 that facilitate electronic settlement of trades. With such issues now resolved, several local companies are engaged with Trop-X in regards to listing,” explained Francois Venter, managing director for Trop-X.

“Ultimately our vision is to create an Exchange that will facilitate listing and trading of Seychelles and African securities.  We aim to bring more liquidity to Africa and allow for increased Foreign Direct Investment, especially for small and medium sized enterprise companies and mining companies that are real drivers of growth and employment in Africa.” 

“We’re very excited about the Sacos Group listing as it is one of the largest and most established companies in Seychelles. While we are currently engaged with other local and foreign companies, that we expect will be making announcements soon, we are pleased that the first listing is a local Seychelles company,” said Mr Venter.

The Sacos group comprises the Sacos Insurance Company Ltd (SACL), the Sacos Life Assurance Company and Sun Investment (Seychelles) Limited. The Sacos management team incudes Michel Felix, who has served as chairman to the Sacos board since its privatisation in 2006, and Antonio Lucas, the Sacos group’s chief executive since 1989.

Mr Lucas stated that “…listing on Trop-X is the next logical step for the Sacos group. We have seen steadily increasing profits which have benefited our shareholders over the past years. Our company goals are orientated towards anticipating opportunities and achieving progress. We are happy that we are the first to take the opportunity that Trop-X presents and confident that it will lead to the further development of our company as an insurance provider both locally and to the region.”

The State Assurance Corporation of Seychelles (Sacos) was the sole insurance provider in Seychelles until H. Savy Insurance entered the market in 2005.  The government of Seychelles remains one of the major shareholders, holding directly 20% of the company, while 37.1% is held by Opportunities Investment (a partnership between the Seychelles Pension Fund and Swan Investment), 12.9% held by current and former staff members and 30% held by various public shareholders.

“As the government remains one of our key shareholders, we are still regarded by some as being a parastatal. This step will reaffirm that Sacos is a private company and operates as such,” Mr Felix said.

“As a board we are proud of the success that Sacos has enjoyed to date and believe that the requirements for continued listing will serve to further benefit the company and the shareholders.”

Daron Walker, chief executive of Constant Capital (Seychelles) Ltd, the newly appointed Sponsor Advisor to Sacos, said: “Listing on the Exchange will bring a number of benefits for the company as a whole and in particular its shareholders. One such benefit will be the unlocking of shareholder value; historically, listings have seen the price of the shares that list increase significantly in value.”

He recommends that “current shareholders should be cautious of selling their shares before the company has listed or they could risk receiving less than the true value of their shares”.
For its financial year ending December 2011, Sacos registered a gross profit of SR33 million, representing an increase of 24% over the previous year, paid out a dividend of SR60 per share, and total asset value of SCR569 million comprising SCR225 million in non-life insurance, SCR341 million in life insurance and SCR130 million of shareholder’s equity.

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