History of NSE
1920s – 1953: Dealing in shares commenced with trading taking place on a gentleman’s agreement with no physical trading floor. London Stock Exchange (LSE) officials accepted to recognize the setting up of the Nairobi Stock Exchange as an overseas stock exchange (1953).
1954 – 1962: The Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE) was registered under the Societies Act (1954) as a voluntary association of stockbrokers and charged with the responsibility of developing the securities market and regulating trading activities. Business was transacted by telephone and prices determined through negotiation.
1963 – 1970: The Government adopted a new policy with the primary goal of transferring economic and social control to citizens. By 1968, the number of listed public sector securities was 66 of which 45% were for Government of Kenya, 23% Government of Tanzania and 11% Government of Uganda. During this period, the NSE operated as a regional market in East Africa where a number of the listed industrial shares and public sector securities included issues by the Governments of Tanzania and Uganda (the East African Community).
However, with the changing political regimes among East African Community members, various decisions taken affected the free movement of capital which ultimately led to the delisting of companies domiciled in Uganda and Tanzania from the Nairobi Stock Exchange.
1975: When the EAC finally collapsed in 1975, the Government of Uganda compulsorily nationalized companies which were either quoted or subsidiaries of listed companies.
1988: The first privatization through the NSE, through the successful sale of a 20% Government stake in Kenya Commercial Bank. The sale left the Government of Kenya and affiliated institutions retaining 80% ownership of the bank.
1990: The CMA was constituted in January 1990 through the Capital Markets Authority Act (Cap 495A) and inaugurated in March 1990. The main purpose of setting up the CMA was to have a body specifically charged with the responsibility of promoting and facilitating the development of an orderly and efficient capital market in Kenya.
1991: NSE was registered as a private company limited by shares. Share trading moved from being conducted over a cup of tea, to the floor based open outcry system, located at IPS Building, Kimathi Street, Nairobi.
1993: The CMA increased the initial paid up capital for stockbrokers from Kshs.100, 000 to Kshs.5.0 million while that for investment advisors was set at Kshs.1.0 million.
1994: With the 1994 CMA Act (Amendments), it became mandatory that a securities exchange approved by the CMA be a company limited by guarantee. The number of stockbrokers increased by a further seven.
On February 18, 1994, the NSE 20-Share Index reached a record high of 5,030 points. The NSE was rated by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) as the best performing market in the world with a return of 179% in dollar terms.
The NSE also moved to more spacious premises at the Nation Centre in July 1994, setting up a computerized delivery and settlement system – DASS.
1995: An additional eight stockbrokers were licensed in June 1995 and with the suspension of one stockbroker, the total number of stockbrokers was twenty.
The CMA established the Investor Compensation Fund whose purpose was to compensate investors for financial losses arising from the failure of a licensed broker or dealer to meet their contractual obligations.
1996: Privatization of Kenya Airways where more than 110, 000 shareholders acquired stake in the airline and the Government of Kenya reduced its stake from 74% to 26%. The Kenya Airways Privatization team was awarded the World Bank Award for Excellence for 1996, for being a model success story in the divestiture of state-owned enterprises.
1997: With the objective of developing a code of conduct, promoting professionalism, and establishing examinable courses for its members as well as facilitate liaison with the CMA and the NSE, the members of the NSE formed the Association of Kenya Stock brokers (AKS).
1998: The CMA published new guidelines on the disclosure standards by listed companies. The disclosure requirements were meant for both public offerings of securities as well as continued reporting obligations, among others.
January 1999: The CMA issued guidelines to promote good corporate governance practices by listed companies through the constitution of audit committees.
March 23, 1999: The Central Depository and Settlement Corporation Limited (CDSC) was incorporated under the Companies Act (Cap 486).
November 30, 1999: The East African Community Treaty was signed in Arusha, Tanzania between five countries, Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda and The United Republic of Tanzania.
2000: Five core shareholders of the CDSC signed an agreement and paid up some share capital.
2001: The market at the NSE was split into the Main Investment Market Segment (MIMS), Alternate Investment Market Segment (AIMS) and the Fixed Income Securities Market Segment (FISMS).
The EAC Secretariat formally convened the first meeting of the new Capital Markets Development Committee in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
2003: The Central Depositories Act 2000 was operationalized in June 2003.
2004: Following the successful signing of an MOU between the Dar-es-Salaam Stock Exchange, the Uganda Securities Exchange and the Nairobi Securities Exchange, the East African Securities Exchanges Association was formed.
November 10, 2004: The central despository system was commissioned. For the first time in Kenya’s history, the process of clearing and settlement of shares traded in Kenya’s capital markets was automated.
September 11, 2006: The NSE implemented live trading on its own automated trading systems trading equities. The ATS also had the capability of trading immobilized corporate bonds and treasury bonds. The Exchange’s trading hours were increased from two hours (10:00 am – 12:00 pm) to three hours (10:00 am – 1:00 pm).
December 17, 2007: The NSE implemented its Wide Area Network (WAN) platform. With the onset of remote trading, brokers and investment banks no longer required a physical presence on the trading floor since they would be able to trade through terminals in their offices linked to the NSE trading engine.
February 1, 2008: The Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE) announced the extension of trading hours at the bourse. Trading would commence from 9.00am and close at 3.00pm each working day.
February 25, 2008: In order to provide investors with a comprehensive measure of the performance of the stock market, the Nairobi Stock Exchange introduced the NSE All-Share Index (NASI).
April 2008: The NSE launched the first edition of the NSE Smart Youth Investment Challenge to promote stock market investments among Kenyan youth.
June 9 2008: The immobilized shares of Safaricom Ltd., commenced trading on the NSE after the trading session was opened in a colorful ceremony presided by H.E. President Mwai Kibaki. The Safaricom IPO increased the number of shares listed on the bourse to over 55.0 billion shares, from the previous 15.0 billion.
2009: The Exchange launched its Complaints Handling Unit (CHU) in a bid to make it easier for investors and the general public to forward any queries and access prompt feedback.
December 7, 2009: The NSE marked the first day of automated trading in government bonds through the Automated Trading System and uploaded all government bonds on the System.
2011: July 4, 2011: The equity settlement cycle moved from the previous T+4 settlement cycle to the T+3 settlement cycle.
July 6, 2011: The Nairobi Stock Exchange Limited changed its name to the Nairobi Securities Exchange Limited. The change of name was a reflection of the 2010 – 2014 strategic plan of the Nairobi Securities Exchange to evolve into a full service securities exchange which supports trading, clearing and settlement of equities, debt, derivatives and other associated instruments.
August 1, 2011: The business segments under which our listed companies are placed were reclassified. Equities were now under ten (10) industry sectors. Debt securities including preference shares were under three (3) categories.
November 8, 2011: The NSE together with FTSE International launched the FTSE NSE Kenya 15 and FTSE NSE Kenya 25 Indices.
March 21, 2012: The Nairobi Securities Exchange became a member of the Financial Information Services Division (FISD) of the Software and Information Industry Association (SIIA).
August 8, 2012: The Nairobi Securities Exchange entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with the Somalia Stock Exchange Investment Corporation (SSE), regarding the possibility of co-operating to establish a securities exchange business involving the trading, settlement, delivery of listed securities and other stockbrokerage activities.
September 5, 2012: The NSE Broker Back Office commenced operations with a system capable of facilitating internet trading improving the integrity of the Exchange trading systems.
October 3, 2012: NSE together with FTSE International launched the FTSE NSE Kenyan Shilling Government Bond Index. This was the first instrument of its kind in Eastern Africa and gave investors the opportunity to access current information and provided a reliable indication of the Kenyan Government Bond market’s performance.
December 14, 2012: UMEME Holdings Limited cross listed its 1,623,878,005 shares on the Main Investment Market Segment (MIMS) of the Nairobi Securities Exchange. It was the first inward cross listing of an East African company on the NSE since the incorporation of the East African Securities Exchanges Association (EASEA) on May 15 2009.
January 22, 2013: The Growth Enterprises Market Segment (GEMS) giving small and medium enterprises a great opportunity to access the capital markets was launched by Mr. Mugo Kibati, Director-General of Kenya Vision’s 2030 Delivery Board.
February 25 2013: Centum Investment Company became the first company in East Africa to list an equity linked note, when its Kshs. 4.19 Billion Note Issue commenced trading on the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) Fixed Income Securities Market Segment (FISMS).
February 28, 2013: The Board of Association of Futures Market (AFM), admitted the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) as an associate member of the Association. The Association promotes and encourages the establishment of new derivatives and related markets.
June 3, 2013: The Nairobi Securities Exchange moved to its new residence outside the central business district located on 55 Westlands Road – The Exchange.
June 25, 2013: The first reverse takeover transaction in East Africa was completed when I&M Holdings began trading on the NSE. I&M Holdings used the reverse takeover of City Trust which was listed on AIMS to migrate the new firm to MIMS.
June 26, 2013: Moody’s Investors Service and the Nairobi Securities Exchange hosted the inaugural East Africa Credit Risk Conference in Nairobi.
July 15, 2013: Home Afrika, made history by being the first company to list by introduction on the Growth Enterprise Market Segment (GEMS).
August 8, 2013: The Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) and the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
August 19, 2013: The Board of Directors of the Nairobi Securities Exchange admitted CBA Capital Ltd., and Equity Investment Bank Ltd., as trading participants.
September 24, 2013: As a result of its initiatives to increase company listings and diversify asset classes, the panel of distinguished judges for the 2013 Africa investor Index Series Awards, ranked the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE), the winner of the Most Innovative African Stock Exchange category.
April 7, 2014: The 60th Anniversary Celebrations of the Nairobi Securities Exchange kicked off with the Launch of the new NSE Brand and official opening of the Exchange. Our brand migration was informed by developments we are undergoing at the bourse.
June 27, 2014: The Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) received formal approval from the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) to operate as a demutualized entity. This is after the approval of the NSE’s final application which met the regulator’s requirements as stipulated in Section 5(3) of the Capital Markets (Demutualization of the Nairobi Securities Exchange) Regulations 2012.
On June 27, 2014: The Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) received formal approval from the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) to offer its shares to the public through an Initial Public Offer (IPO) and subsequently Self-list its shares on the Main Investment Market Segment (MIMS) of the NSE.
July 23, 2014: The Nairobi Securities Exchange Limited officially launched its Initial Public Offering (IPO) seeking to raise Kshs.627,000,000.00 by selling up to 66,000,000 new shares at a price of Ksh 9.50 per share. The minimum number of shares available for purchase were 500.
September 9, 2014: The Nairobi Securities Exchange listed its 194,625,000 issued and fully paid up shares on the Main Investment Market Segment (MIMS) under a new sector – Investment Services of the bourse after a successful Initial Public Offering which sought to raise Kshs.627 million by selling 66 million new shares at a price of Kshs. 9.50 per share. 17,859 investors applied for 504,189,700 new shares worth Kshs. 4.789 billion; a subscription rate of 763.9%, garnering an oversubscription of 663.92%. Following its self-listing the Exchange becomes the second African Exchange after the Johannesburg Stock Exchange to be listed.
On September 16, 2014: The Nairobi Securities Exchange was added as a constituent of the auspicious FTSE Mondo Visione Exchanges Index, the first Index in the world to focus on listed exchanges and other trading venues.
September 26, 2014: The Nairobi Securities Exchange launched a new system for trading corporate bonds and Government of Kenya Treasury Bonds allowing on-line trading of debt securities and is integrated with the settlement system at the Central Bank of Kenya. The system is more efficient, scalable and flexible, and can support trading in bonds that have been issued in foreign currencies.
October 24, 2014: The Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) and Korea Exchange (KRX) signed a memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in Korea, marking the beginning of collaboration between the Kenya and Korea Capital Markets.
November 25, 2014: The Sixtieth anniversary celebrations culminated with the Exchange hosting the 2014 African Securities Exchanges Association (ASEA) Conference and Annual General Meeting (AGM) from 23 – 25 November 2014 in Diani, Kenya the Conference was opened by His Excellency, Honourable William S. Ruto, Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya.
October 2015: The NSE became the fourth African Exchange to launch Real Estate Investments Trusts (REITs) Market and consequently listed the first REIT, the Stanlib Fahari I-REIT.
July 2016: The NSE received formal recognition as a Self-Regulatory Organization by the Capital Markets Authority.
June 2017: The NSE became the first Exchange in the East African region to introduce Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and subsequently listed the Barclays New Gold ETF.
January 2018: The NSE became the first Exchange in East and Central Africa to be admitted as a full member of the World Federation of Exchanges.
December 2018: The NSE launched its incubation and acceleration program dubbed Ibuka (meaning ’emerge’ in Kiswahili) to offer companies an opportunity to grow their business and develop scalable and impactful business models.
February 2019: The NSE launched revised listing rules incorporating listing requirements for Green Bonds enabling the NSE offer a new asset class to issuers and investors.
July 2019: The NSE launched NEXT Derivatives Market becoming the second Exchange in Africa to offer Exchange Traded Derivatives. The launch enabled the NSE to commence the trading of Single Stocks and Index Futures.
October 2019: The NSE launched a new trading system provided for by Millennium Technologies who are part of London Stock Exchange Group.