SecondSTAX, in partnership from the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) and the Nairobi Stock Exchange has launched an online portal that enables institutional investors across Africa to easily and directly invest on the two exchanges.
Known as the SecondSTAX portal, the cloud-based platform would allow licensed broker-dealers, asset managers, large commercial banks and other institutional investors from across the continent to easily invest in the GSE and NSE.
Investors will also be able to invest in their native currencies, making a wider range of assets and opportunities available to more Africans and creating an efficient route to increased wealth on the continent.
The platform which was facilitated in collaboration with Kestrel Capital (East Africa) Limited (Kenya) and Databank Group (Ghana) is expected to be expanded to other stock exchanges across the continent.
Challenge of African stock exchanges
Despite having some of the best-performing stocks and bonds globally, Africa’s exchanges are largely inaccessible to investors outside the jurisdictions where they have been listed.
Over the last decade, African capital markets have raised more than US$ 246 billion in debt capital markets.
More than US$ 87 billion has been raised in equity capital markets and equity indices have peaked at over 50% growth across the major regional exchanges.
However, the siloed nature of these exchanges as well as insufficient data on the risk profiles of assets has led to limited access to capital for markets and limited access to high-growth assets for investors.
Building a bridge
Commenting on the launch of the portal, the Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of SecondSTAX, Eugene Tawiah, said “we see ourselves as building a bridge that will allow all the capital that is currently restricted to individual markets to have access to the entire continent.
“More importantly, we are doing this in Africa for Africans across the continent, and these partnerships with the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) and the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) are the first steps in our journey,” he stated.
He said it was the believe of the company that there are many exciting and profitable investment opportunities across Africa and that by reimagining Africa’s capital markets, they will be able to position more investors to take advantage of them.
“We are already in discussions with other exchanges and we are looking forward to switching on those opportunities on our portal in the near future,” he said.
Portal is timely
For his part, the outgoing Managing Director of GSE, Ekow Afedzie, said the SecondSTAX portal was a timely innovative tool at a time that African markets were accelerating efforts to integrate and foster cross-border trading.
He said partnering fintech’s to develop innovative digital products and opening the markets to international businesses and investors via technology was a key pillar in GSE’s 3-year strategic plan.
“A digital tool that puts cross-border trading at the fingertips of institutional and retail investors to easily buy and sell stocks and bonds through stockbrokers is a great boost to the cross-border trading integration efforts in Africa,” he stated.
Linking markets, a priority
The CEO of NSE, Geoffrey Odundo, said linking markets is a very important priority for the NSE and was something that it was also committed to as part of the African Exchange Linkages Project.
“We are happy with this complementary approach and we look forward to working with SecondSTAX to explore more ways to scale up opportunities on our exchange.
“We believe that we must deepen trading within Africa, facilitate cross-border trading and make our markets more liquid, and platforms like SecondSTAX provide an effective tool for facilitating this agenda,” he stated.