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CFC Insurance Doubles in First Kenya Listing in Two Years

CFC Insurance Holding Ltd., Kenya’s first listing in 28 months, more than doubled on its first day of trading in Nairobi.

Stock of CFC Stanbic Holding Ltd.’s insurance unit traded at 14.8 shillings by the 3 p.m. close in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, compared with a reference price of 6.52 shillings, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Kenya has a low penetration rate for insurance, creating opportunity for the market to grow, Gregory Waweru, an analyst at Nairobi-based Kestrel Capital East Africa Ltd., said in a phone interview today. “The broadening of the financial sector at the Nairobi Stock Exchange is being spearheaded by insurance companies,” Waweru said.

CFC’s listing is among five the Nairobi Stock Exchange, Africa’s worst-performing bourse in the first quarter, is targeting by the end of the year, Chief Executive Officer Peter Mwangi said on April 1. British American Insurance Co. and TransCentury Ltd., a Kenyan investor in infrastructure projects, are among companies that plan to trade on the exchange. Co-Operative Bank of Kenya Ltd., the country’s third-biggest lender by assets, started trading its shares in December 2008.

CFC Stanbic shareholders approved on Aug. 9 a plan to delink its insurance businesses. The largest shareholder of CFC Insurance is South African-based Liberty Holdings Ltd. which controls 56.82 percent, according to a statement distributed by the company in Nairobi today.

CFC Insurance owns The Heritage Insurance Co. and CFC Life Assurance Ltd. and has other investments in Tanzania, it said.

The company aims to grow its presence in East Africa by offering diversified insurance products such as health coverage in Tanzania and Uganda, Mike du Toit, regional managing director for Liberty, said in an interview today in Nairobi.

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