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Custody and Registrars enhances service offering
Written by CIO Staff Writer
Monday, 24 January 2011 11:54

As efforts to strengthen Kenya's equity markets continue to gain momentum, Custody and Registrars a leading share registry and business process outsourcing firm has confirmed the finalization of a project geared at delivering value added services.
With anticipated demand for electronic based services, the firm has invested heavily in Information Technology (IT) based solutions to as part of a strategic plan to deliver cutting edge services.

Speaking about the firm's ongoing capacity enhancement initiatives, Custody and Registrars General Manager Mrs. Kerry-Ann Makatiani explained that the firm is now well positioned to support a wide range of electronic based share registry services.
"Custody and Registrars has covered very good ground in laying the groundwork for the adoption of electronic share registry management services to meet the increasing interest in these services, Mrs. Makatiani disclosed.

And added: "We have also noted the shift over the recent years to bonds, rights and bonus issues as companies recapitalize for business growth. We are well equipped to actively support our clients through these business transactions as our operating systems and processes are robust."

Among other elements, Custody and Registrars is now in a position to offer electronic annual reports and electronic management of shares accounts.

The firm has also enhanced the functionality of SharePower, a web based system that allows shareholders and listed companies to track and monitor their investments online and on their mobile phone. The system comprises of various modules, features, functions and produces various reports such as enquiries, reporting and printouts further enhancing the clients' convenience.

While further clarifying on SharePower's functional capacity, Mrs. Makatiani explained that the system is a vital tool for listed companies and the investors providing Issuers access to monitor their registers' movements at any given time and extract any information on the shareholding structures, taxation positions, dividend history as well as free alerts of proceedings within the market.

The system she added, also allows uploading of electronic annual reports while empowering shareholders to evaluate their portfolio balances, transaction history, check accuracy of their standing orders e.g. bank/third party mandates, EFT details, accuracy of names and contact details as well as dividend payments history.

Shareholders will also receive alerts on their mobile phone on AGM's, dividend payment announcements etc. They will be able to track and monitor their shares anywhere, anytime in their own comfort.

Registrar Custody Firm to Go Regional
Jeremiah Kiplang'at- East African Newspaper
28 March 2011

Custody and Registrars, a share register management firm, will this year roll out branches across the EAC region with an eye to opportunities arising from the ongoing regional integration.
The firm which specialises in storing, safekeeping and processing of listed companies' registers, says it hopes to grow its business by tapping into companies listed in regional bourses. Kerry-Ann Makatiani, the firm's general manager, said it will first put up offices in Tanzania by June before heading to Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi.
"We are currently serving some companies that are listed on bourses across the region but we want to go bigger into the business in the Community, " said Ms Makatiani.
Some of the listed companies who are clients of Custody and Registrars are listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange with a regional presence including Kenya Airways, East Africa Breweries, Barclays Bank, Standard Chartered and Nation Media Group.
Kenya Airways, NMG, EABL, are trading in all the three stock markets: NSE, Uganda Securities Exchange, and the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange. Centum Investment is listed in Kenya and Uganda.
"As a capital market leader and registrar of preference by major listed companies in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and other regions, our unparalleled experience and capabilities in Share Registry, and Corporate and Advisory services are unrivalled in serving clients. We plan to capitalise on these assets with our business growth plans." Ms Makatiani said.
The firm's move to cover all East African countries will also serve to enhance investor relations across the regional bourses. Having shareholders across the region poses a big challenge in organising annual general meetings sometimes requiring shareholders to travel to one country for meetings.
But Custody and Registrars said it is pursuing a strategies of rolling out electronically managed AGMs. "Electronic AGMs is perfect for companies with large and geographically spread shareholders and involves adoption of modern technologies such as telecasts, and video conferencing," said Ms Makatiani. "Such developments will require an enabling technology infrastructure and sufficient Internet penetration."

Local share registry firms automate Operation

An investor monitors the digital board at the NSE. Photo/REUTERS

Monday, January 24 2011 at 00:00
Share registrar companies have stepped up automation of their operations to ease updating of shareholder registers, transfer of shares, dividend inquiries and related services that the custody firms offer.
The companies also hope to capitalise on increasing share and bond offers and the preference for electronic share accounts over physical certificates to earn more revenues-with clothing and lifestyle goods retailer Deacons Kenya having set the automation pace by becoming the first non-listed company to issue electronic stocks.
Custody and Registrars (C&R) last week launched its electronic share management platform, joining Image Registrars that already has an automated registry system.
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Kerry-Ann Makatiani, the general manager of C&R, said the move was in response to customer demand for faster and more convenient share registry services.
"We have noted the shift in recent years to bonds, rights and bonus issues as companies recapitalise for business growth, and are equipping to support our clients through these business transactions," said Ms Makatiani.
Automation of services in the capital markets goes back to 2006 when the Nairobi Stock Exchange installed an automated trading system for handling equity transactions.
Online trading
Stockbrokers have since taken up the cue and launched online trading systems that allow investors real time access to the market where they can execute their buy or sell orders.
Bond trading has also been automated, sparking huge growth in bond turnover last year when trading increased ten-fold to Sh500 billion due to ease in transaction settlements.
Public listed companies have contracted share registrars to manage their shareholders' records.
Lawrence Kibet, the operations manager at Image Registrar said online systems had cut back on the human traffic to the firm's premises.
"Many investors are now able to resolve most of their issues online with great convenience," said Mr Kibet.
Image Registrars handles the back office secretarial services for mobile phone company Safaricom and power producer KenGen- the counters with the largest number of shareholders at the Nairobi Stock Exchange.

Previously owned by the Barclays Bank of Kenya, C&R handles back office operations for 17 listed companies among them beer maker EABL, investment company Centum and the Nation Media Group.
Recent fundraising activities involving listed companies and the high equity turnover means more work for share registrars who update shareholder registers every day.

Kenya: Press Releases: Custody and Registrars Moves to Exploit Regional Opportunities Nairobi, 21 March 2011 --- Custody and Registrars (C&R) Services, a leading share registry and business process outsourcing (BPO) solutions provider, has formally announced plans to extend its business coverage across East Africa as part of its corporate growth strategies this year.

Speaking during an event to mark the firm's 25th anniversary, C&R General Manager, Mrs. Kerry-Ann Makatiani, said the regional expansion plans aim to ensure that all listed firms across the region receive superior custodial and share registry services. The firm's move to cover all East African countries, Mrs. Makatiani, added will also serve to enhance investor relations across the regional bourses.

The announcement by C&R is particularly expected to accelerate ongoing efforts to encourage cross listing bids across the Nairobi Stock Exchange, Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange, Rwanda Stock Exchange (formerly Rwanda Over the Counter Exchange), and Uganda Securities Exchange.

"Cost effective investor relations, with shareholders domiciled in other countries, will become increasingly challenging as these shareholders numbers increase from cross-listings and regional growth of listed companies," noted Mrs. Makatiani. She added: "As a capital market leader and registrar of preference by major listed companies in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and other regions, our unparalleled experience and capabilities in share registry and corporate and advisory services are unrivaled in serving clients from recently listed companies to large established multi-nationals. We plan to capitalise on these assets with our business growth plans." said Mrs. Makatiani.

Established in 1986 and operating as Barclays Advisory and Registrars Services (BARS), C&R was an in house department of Barclays Bank of Kenya (BBK) set up to provide share register services for the bank. In December 2006, the company was sold as a going concern and rebranded as Custody & Registrars Services Ltd.

The company has continued to maintain its market leadership position and is now focusing on business growth opportunities and ICT integration.

C&R also plans to introduce new products and services to improve efficiency in dividend processing options and improved transaction processing capabilities. The company plans to capitalise on its recently launched SharePower product. "SharePower is a value-added system that, in combination with our robust core operating system, presents us with great potential for solutions to address market needs."

A revolutionary shareholder management solution is also available from C&R. One of the options the firm is seeking to explore is electronic AGMs. For AGM management of large and geographically spread shareholders, C&R is advising locally listed firms to embrace ICT solutions.

"Some of these trends involve broadcasting AGMs through the use of webcams to agreed locations, with shareholders registering to participate electronically. However, we acknowledge that such developments will require an enabling technology infrastructure and sufficient internet penetration. Therefore, collective effort by all stakeholders will be necessary," said Mrs. Makatiani.


Business Daily
Kenya: Shares Register Firm Extends Its Reach
John Gachiri- 18 March 2011

Stock market services firm Custody and Registrar (C&R) has announced intentions to set up operations in Tanzania and Uganda, in an expansion drive expected to shore up its revenues.
The firm, which offers shareholder register updating services and handles transfer of shares and dividend inquiries to 18 listed companies in Kenya said that it is opening two regional offices which are expected to be operational by the second half of this year.

"We're at an advanced stage of opening regional markets in Uganda and Tanzania," said CSR general manager Kerry-Ann Makatiani.
C&R marketing manager Beverlyne Wangari said that depending on the success of the two new branches, Rwanda could be next on the company's regional expansion plans.

Going regional will give C&R access to 11 listed companies on the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE), 16 firms on the Dar-es-Salaam Stock Exchange and 3 corporations on the Rwandan stock exchange.

C&R makes its money by maintaining share registry services and company secretarial services for listed companies and business process outsourcing firms.
Hemming in new clients will increase the firm's revenues and, with more listings and rights issues expected to take place in 2011, there is a bigger incentive for the firm to go regional.

TransCentury, British American Group and Bank de Kigali are all expected to list by the end of the year. Tanzanian airline Precision Air is also expected to list on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange next month.

C&R is also eyeing diversification into offering central depository services.
Immobilisation of share certificates is currently done at the Central Depository and Settlement Corporation (CDSC).
Ms Wangari said offering depository services would make it easier for clients who want to immobilise shares for trading in automated stock exchanges.
The Capital Markets Authority, through the proposed law - Central Depositories (Amendment) Bill 2011 will open the door for companies to offer depository services if passed.
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Companies will however be required to increase their capital and change their management structures before they can be licensed as central depository firms.
For companies that will be licensed, they will benefit from access to the commissions charged on transactions on bonds and shares traded on the stock exchange.
CDSC earns 0.06 per cent for shares traded and 0.02 per cent for bonds.
C&R also plans to revamp its shareholder management solution unit by facilitating electronic annual general meetings which would save costs especially for firms that that are cross-listed on the various exchanges. Infrastructure however poses a challenge



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