Egypt’s EFG approves $144 mn share buyback plan

Reuters –

EFG Hermes, one of the largest investment banks in the Middle East, said on Thursday it had approved a buyback plan that aims to return 1 billion Egyptian pounds ($143.8 million) to shareholders during the first nine months of 2014.

The first phase of the programme amounts to 425 million EGP, to be executed within the next four weeks, with the second phase taking place in the late second to third quarter of 2014, EFG said in a statement.

“The offer will be fully funded from the company’s current liquidity position,” the statement said.

“The start of the offer period and its duration will be subject to the receipt of approvals from the Egyptian Financial Supervisory Authority and the Egyptian Stock Exchange and will be communicated to the market as soon as possible.”

EFG’s shares rose almost 10 percent to a 14-month high of 10.27 pounds by 08:45 GMT, after the announcement of the plan, against a 1.1 percent rise in Cairo’s benchmark index.

The first phase of the plan will involve a buyback of 36.96 million shares, representing 6.44 percent of the firm’s current outstanding shares, at 11.5 EGP per share, the statement said. The second phase will be worth 575 million pounds.

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