When the Haldane McCall REIT (HMK REIT) was announced in December 2014, it served as an interesting addition to the Nigerian REIT universe. Offering 2,600,000,000 units at N5.15 each, it would have been valued at N13.39b making it the 2nd largest Nigerian REIT after UPDC. However, the timetable set out in the prospectus, which stipulated that the REIT would have been listed on the stock exchange by April 3rd has us wondering what has happened?
The IPO commenced on December 4th 2014 to end January 14th 2015 but the fund manager gave a 2 week extension pushing the IPO completion date to January 28th 2015. It was said that this was done in a bid to give interested investors the opportunity to invest in the REIT, following the time lost to the public holidays that were declared during the festive seasons. Nonetheless, difficult capital market conditions at the time due to economic and currency pressures as well as a stock exchange that was among the worst performing globally would not have helped patronage.
Now its almost been a month since the expected listing date and no statement has been released with an explanation regarding the delay. Many that are familiar with the benefits of REITs are eager to see the industry thrive despite some of its legislative and structural challenges. They can explain the importance of this REIT’s success in demonstrating inherent potential currently lying fallow to the entire capital market. To this end, we await on more developments regarding the performance of this IPO and desire to see it succeed for the sake of the Nigerian REIT industry.