Kazakhstan’s big name fintech player Kaspi.kz working on US listing

Kazakhstan’s big name fintech player Kaspi.kz working on US listing
Kaspi.kz wants to make another stock market splash, this time in the US. / screengrab
By Kanat Shaku in Almaty April 25, 2023

Kaspi.kz, the big-name fintech player in Kazakhstan remembered for its 2020 splash stock market debut in London, is preparing for a US listing.

"We see multiple potential benefits from a US listing, including an enlarged, more diverse shareholder base and increased trading liquidity," the company, valued at $6.5bn when it listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and Astana International Exchange (AIX) in October 2020, said in a statement.

"We have now started to prepare for such an event, albeit we remain in the early stages, with any transaction naturally contingent upon market conditions," it added.

The announcement of the US move came as the company on April 25 reported a 52% y/y increase in adjusted 1Q23 profits to Kazakhstani tenge (KZT) 178bn ($389mn). 

The company's board also announced a proposed dividend of KZT750 per global depository receipt (GDR).

Kaspi.kz’s arrival on the stock market two and a half years ago made it the most valuable Kazakh company ever listed. Its full-year 2022 net revenue reached Kazakhstani tenge (KZT) 309.7bn. 

The UK/Kazakhstan dual IPO coincided with the release of a report by Astana International Financial Center (AIFC) titled “The State of Fintech in Central Asia: How Kazakhstan Drives the Regional Fintech Industry”. 

The company saw a big surge in popularity during the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced people to shift towards digital services while staying indoors. The Kaspi Super App, said by the company to be the most popular application in Kazakhstan, offers a range of services including bill payment, loans provision, peer-to-peer payments, an online marketplace and a personal finance management tool

The app is extensively used by retailers throughout Kazakhstan for selling goods and receiving payments. This has made it a preferred payment option for Kazakh citizens who prefer cashless transactions. 

Apart from its online marketplace and payment system, Kaspi also runs an online store that offers direct deliveries of groceries and other consumer goods. 

Kaspi.kz launched an online travel platform in late 2020, with users able to buy domestic and international flight tickets. The company has expressed intentions to expand operations beyond Kazakhstan, targeting new businesses in the Central Asian and Caucasus regions.

In March, the firm announced the launch of a programme to repurchase GDRs, with up to $100mn worth of GDRs set to be bought back by the fintech company. 

It stated that the four-month programme was effective immediately and would run until no later than July 21.

The move by Kaspi.kz may represent an effort to boost investor confidence ahead of its US stock exchange listing and potentially increase the value of its GDRs, as the company can reduce the number of shares available on the market in order to drive up their price.


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