The Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) will in the near future open branches in various parts of the country as part of efforts to reach out to the many potential investors, the local bourse has said. Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Hiran Mendis, revealed this in passing during the launch of the BSE Handbook a fortnight ago.
Responding to a Gazette Business query last week, BSE Deputy CEO, Thapelo Tsheole said they have yet to determine the number of places they will be expanding to, but revealed that they will first consider Francistown because it is the second major city in the country.
“The BSE is still focusing on improving market and product development to further develop the retail base and product base. We will thereafter focus on expanding our IT based trading and possibly open branches in other areas. But due to present technology, the BSE outreach is still possible even before branch network expansion,” he said.
Quizzed on what prompted the expansion, Tsheole said the BSE wants to reach as many would be investors as possible. BSE prides itself as one of the cornerstones of the Botswana financial system and it is at the centre of facilitating Botswana’s transition to an International Financial Services hub.
From its pre-eminent domestic base, the BSE continues to demonstrate Botswana’s consummate performance on the global capital markets by providing access to the country’s equity and debt markets.
The BSE says it facilitates this process by having strategic foreign investors use its market as an entry point to the country and availing the opportunity to raise capital efficiently. It also provides a transparent and efficient exit mechanism for these investors when the need arises. The BSE provides Botswana companies with a cost-effective alternative to raise needed capital at a relatively low cost. The BSE is one of Africa’s best performing stock exchanges, averaging 24 per cent aggregate return in the past decade. This has allowed the BSE to be the third largest stock exchange in terms of market capitalization in Southern Africa.