Africansens analyst, Rob Stangroom (RS), interviews Copperbelt Energy Corporation PLC’s (CEC) Senior Manager Corporate Communication manager, Chama Nsabika Kalima (CNK), about their new IRapp and the company’s proactive stance on investor communication and mobile technology’s relevance to its shareholders.

RS: How does the launch of theIRapp contribute to CEC’s corporate governance?

CNK: “CEC, which is listed on the Lusaka Stock Exchange (LuSE), has a responsibility to its shareholders to enable them to trade shares and at the same time, receive a fair price for them. This means that investors must have the latest, comprehensive information they need to make an informed decision. If we are unable to communicate effectively with each investor, the implications are ultimately risk and uncertainty for their investment, and a lower share price as a result.”

“Good corporate governance is about keeping shareholders informed by whatever means possible and we recognise the importance of mobile technology to enhance communication with investors and increase transparency in terms of delivering investor information, in addition to our existing communication channels”.

RS: Who is CEC targeting with theIRapp?

CNK: “The CEC app is available to anyone with a modern mobile phone, but is targeted initially at our institutional shareholders. We are well placed to continue rolling out projects in Africa and we are looking to build long term relationships with our investors because there is so much potential for more investment on the Continent. The more we can showcase our credibility and keep investors informed, the better.”

RS: How does theIRapp enhance shareholder communication?

CNK: “The convenience of mobile technology cannot be over-stated. I think from CEC’s perspective, it’s about visibility and we ensure that when we release a corporate action or news item, its pushed to the mobile device of the investor or person that’s interested in us. It’s there in his face and they can choose to ignore the information, or act on it, but at least it is there, ahead of other companies.”

RS: Does theIRapp complement your existing communication strategy?

CNK: “CEC has adopted a policy of using all available channels to communicate corporate and investor information, including a comprehensive website, Google +, email alerts, as well as social media, including Twitter and Facebook and now a mobile app. Because the communities that we affect are so diverse, from UK based multi-million dollar institutional investors down to people in rural settings, we really want to promote being available to all of them through any means possible.”
“The majority of our website traffic is from outside Zambia, around 60 per cent, with the leading countries being the UK, USA and South Africa – countries where the majority of website visitors are visiting from mobile. Having a mobile app complements our rounded approach that we hope conforms to the best practices of international companies.”

RS: Why is the app important to shareholders and why is it relevant?

CNK: “We are a capital intensive business and we invest for the long term. Investors, I think, can generally take a short term view looking for investment returns and so when they invest in a company like CEC, it’s important that they are able to see the bigger picture of our long term strategy. Regular communication on our activities helps shareholders better understand what we are about. The app is important to shareholders in delivering appropriate and up-to-the-minute information and they can, in turn, contact us at any time and be assured of an efficient response.”

RS: Why is it important to CEC and what should shareholders be aware of?

CNK: “We are involved in a number of significant power projects across Africa, which are actively being rolled out and in many instances have significant economic and social impact. It’s important to us that we keep the communities that we affect, connected and updated with progress. Our key stakeholders are not only investors, but also include power sector regulators, our customers and the wider community.”

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