AccessKenya Group, Kenya's only publicly traded internet company, said it expects to return to profit for the full year as its corporate-customer base grows and may seek more acquisitions to maintain market leadership.
The company will also consider bids for the business once its share price rises, after rebuffing three offers over the past 18 months, Kris Senanu, managing director of the internet services division, said in an interview.
Earlier this month, the company reported first-half profit more than doubled to 61.7 million shillings (Dh2.44 million). That figure may double again for the 12 months through December, Senanu said.
"We are going to make massive profits," he said. "You can assume it is going to be 120 million shillings plus for the full year. Whatever we have done in the half year we are going to continue and it is going to be better."
AccessKenya provides internet access via its fibre-optic network to corporate and so-called high-end residential customers in East Africa's biggest economy. Total fibre-optic subscriptions in Kenya more than doubled to 8,369 in the fourth quarter of 2010, according to the Communications Commission of Kenya's website. Only 26 per cent of the country's population has access to the internet, providing AccessKenya with scope for further growth, Senanu said.
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The company is "on track" to grow its number of corporate customers to 4,600 by December from 4,250 in the first half, he said. AccessKenya is the market leader with a 40 percent share of the corporate market, Senanu said.
Shares in AccessKenya plunged 56 per cent this year, the Nairobi Stock Exchange's worst performer. The stock, which began trading on the bourse at 10 shillings in 2007, fell 20 cents, or 3.2 per cent, to 6 shillings yesterday.
The company rejected the three takeover offers it received because the bid prices were too low and because they "didn't create value for our shareholders," Senanu said.
"Our share price will go up," he said. "When our share price is trading at 18 shillings, 19 shillings, let someone make us an offer then we are going to listen to it." The company may consider for acquisitions to add to the three purchases it has made since 2007, including Openview Business Systems, a computer-hardware retailer.