The first public share issue of Bangladesh’s biggest mobile service provider, Grameenphone, has been subscribed almost four times by domestic investors.
Domestic investors applied for shares worth Taka 16.8 billion (Rs 11.3 billion), subscribing the Taka 4.9 billion (Rs 3.3 billion) issue by almost four times.
Apart from this, non-resident Bangladeshis submitted 39,638 applications for shares worth Taka 671 million (Rs 450 million). The public offering generated interest among salary-earners, students, pensioners, traders, and housewives.
The issue is the largest in the country’s history, eclipsing the previous record by First Security Islami Bank by 4.2 times. The company was promoted as a subsidiary of micro-finance giant Grameen Bank, set up by Muhammad Yunus, winner of the 2006 Nobel peace prize.
Each share had a face value of Taka 10 with a premium of Taka 60.
An investor had to buy at least 200 shares, which amounted to Taka 14,000 (Rs 9,380), which is about one-third of the per capita income of the country.
The capital raised will be spent on network expansion and developing information technology infrastructure.
Applications were received in more than 500 Grameen Bank branches in the country. The issue opened on October 4 and closed on October 8 for domestic investors and on October 18 for non-resident Bangladeshis. The country has four cellphone operators.