Kenya’s Nation Media Gains on Advertising Revenue: Nairobi Mover

Nation Media Group, East Africa’s biggest media company, rose to its highest in 11 months on speculation revenue will be boosted by planned expansion and higher levels of political advertising.

The stock advanced 1.2 percent to 172 shillings by 1:12 p.m. in Nairobi, set for the strongest close since June.

Full-year profit through to December jumped 30 percent to 2 billion shillings ($24 million) as advertising revenue climbed and the circulation of its newspapers increased, the company said March 14. NMG, as the company is known, intends to have a “fully-fledged” news bureau in South Sudan within the next two months and plans to operate a television station in Tanzania upon receiving frequencies from the local regulator, Chief Executive Officer Linus Giyani said at the time.

“They are diversifying in South Sudan and waiting for an approval for a television station in Tanzania; all these factors combined will improve their results this year,” Rufus Mwanyasi, head trader at Nairobi-based Canaan Capital Ltd. said in a phone interview today.

Elections for the presidency and other levels of government in the east African nation are scheduled by March 2013. Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga is the most popular choice for president, Ipsos-Synovate Ltd. said May 1.

“As we get closer to the elections, revenue from political advertisement is definitely going to be higher,” Mwanyasi said.

NMG will also venture into the money-transfer business in partnership with Diamond Trust Bank Ltd., Giyani said March 14. The service will be based on the company’s website, he said.

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