The National Social Security Fund (NSSF) has earned value from the 373,771,921 shares purchased from the power distributor Umeme Limited, the Managing Director Richard Byarugaba has said.
Byarugaba was responding to media reports that erroneously stated that the Fund lost money as a result of reduction in Umeme share price. The Fund acquired shares at a unit price of Ushs 371 while the current share price is about Ushs 219.
“We invested a total of Ushs 138.7 billion in Umeme Limited for the 373,771,921 shares. Over the years, we have earned more than Ushs 65 billion in dividends and coupled with the current market value of our investment at Ushs 81.8 billion, we have a net gain of Ushs 8.4 billion,” Byarugaba explained.
“It is incorrect to say that we have lost money simply because the reduction in the share price has led to a reduction in the value of our investment this financial year, as per current share price. On a deeper analysis, over the years, the Fund has made money from this investment,” he added.
The Fund initially purchased 251,951,071 Umeme shares in 2013. Later in November 2016, the Fund entered into an agreement to buy an additional 121,820,850 shares from Actis Infrastructure, at a cost of UShs 59.4 billion.
The purchase increased the Fund’s total stake in Umeme Limited from 15.5% (251,951,071 shares) to 23% (373,771,921 shares), making NSSF the largest institutional investor in Umeme.
Byarugaba said that the Fund still views Umeme Limited as a viable investment for its members in the medium to long term, given that the demand for electricity is still growing.