Insurer Jubilee Holdings raises Seacom stake to 18.8pc

Kenyan insurer Jubilee Holdings has acquired an additional 10 per cent stake in undersea cable service provider Seacom.

This increases Jubilee’s stake in Seacom to 18.8 per cent after buying an initial 8.8 per cent shareholding. Taking into account that Seacom Holding was valued at $196 million (Sh22.3 billion) in 2020, the 18.8 per cent shareholding puts Jubilee’s total stake at around Sh4 billion. 

The deal highlights Jubilee’s inclination to invest in long-term, private infrastructure projects that require huge capital but generate stable returns with minimised risks. The firm did not reveal its financing plan for the purchase.

“We are very pleased with this additional investment in Seacom, which has been a key partner for the modernisation of African businesses in a number of countries, and we have confidence in the business’s growth trajectory,” Jubilee’s chairman Nizar Juma said in a statement.

“This additional investment will continue to provide us with stable and consistent returns as has been the case with our existing investments as well as consolidate our position at the centre of digital transformation in our region.”

Jubilee Holdings, which is listed on the Nairobi Securities Exchange, said it acquired the stake through IPS Cable System Limited, which has bought Seacom Holding Ltd (Mauritius) shareholding of 10 per cent.

“The completion of this transaction lends credence to our continued need to diversify our investment priorities across key sectors of the economy,” added Mr Juma. 

The insurer’s investments into energy and ICT, he added, are representative of “this diversification and importantly manifest desire to participate as an engine of economic growth of our region”.

Seacom is a $650 million (Sh74 billion), 15,000km submarine fibre optic cable project. In 2009 it launched Africa’s first broadband submarine cable system along the continent’s eastern and Southern coasts.

Through its ownership of Africa’s most extensive ICT data infrastructure, including multiple subsea cables and a continent-wide IP-MPLS network, Seacom provides “a full suite of flexible, scalable and high-quality communications and cloud solutions that enable the growth of the continent’s economy”.

The cable leverages cloud technology to equip small to medium enterprises with cost-effective, simple-to-integrate business tools that expand their reach. Jubilee says it seeks to further diversify its investment profile with interests in the telecommunication and energy sector. 

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