Safaricom awards bosses Sh426m worth of free shares

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Safaricom has awarded its senior managers with 15.5 million shares with the current market value of Sh426 million for free in the year ended March.

The award is as a token of appreciation and compensation for their past performance.

The employees had cashed out 15.1 million units of stock worth Sh415 million the year before, with the company’s cumulative spending on the share-based compensation scheme standing at more than Sh3 billion.

The Business Daily indicates that Safaricom buys its own shares in the open market and allocates them to specific employees who eventually take ownership three years later when they are free to sell the stocks or continue holding them in their personal accounts.

“Additionally, 15.5 million shares historically valued at Sh347.3 million … vested and were exercised by eligible staff,” Safaricom says in its latest annual report.

Among all the firms listed in the Nairobi Securities Exchange, Safaricom boasts of the most lucrative share-based compensation schemes.

Safaricom currently holds 21.83 million shares through a trust. The shares were acquired at a cost of Sh570 million and currently have a market value of Sh600 million.

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