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Big money for financial literacy at grassroots level

Big money for financial literacy at grassroots level

Old Mutual’s Executive for Marketing, Transformation and Customer Strategy, Ndangi Katoma (right) this week brought good news to the Manager of the Financial Literacy Initiative, Francois Brand when he told him his employer has just made available a substantial sum to support the project with its work.

Old Mutual donated N$200,000 to the financial literacy project.

“Financial literacy can make a real difference in equipping Namibians with the knowledge and skills necessary to take control of their lives and build a secure future for themselves and their families. This is one of the reasons that Old Mutual, as a Responsible Business, support financial literacy as a long-term investment in human capital while demonstrating our commitment to the community we serve” stated Katoma.

The Financial Literacy Initiative is a national platform launched in 2012 to offer free financial education to individuals and micro, small and medium enterprises. Old Mutual has been a platform partner and supporter for the past three years.

The initiative strives to ensure that Namibians are better financially educated to make informed financial decisions throughout their lives, ensuring that they choose those products that are best suited for their needs.

A further goal is to help ordinary people understand and exercise their rights and responsibilities with regards to the financial sector and know and make use of the appropriate recourse mechanisms.

The Financial Literacy Initiative monitors and evaluates the efficiency of its projects and conduct research in financial capability.

Thanking Old Mutual for the very generous contribution, Brand said “supporting financial literacy should be viewed as a long-term investment by public, private and civil institutions.” From the Financial Literacy Baseline Survey, it transpired 62% of Namibians have difficulty in keeping their financial commitments and that only 32% stick to their budget.

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Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia

Promotion

20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.