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Public Utility: USE: UMEME
Industry Energy industry
Founded 2004
Headquarters Kampala, Uganda
Key people
Patrick Bitature
Selestino Babungi[2]
Managing Director
Services Electricity
Revenue IncreaseAftertax: US$25.4 million (UGX:70.5 billion) (2014)
Total assets US$436.3 million (UGX:1.212 trillion) (2014)[3]
Number of employees
1,389+ (2014)[3]
Website Homepage

Umeme is an energy distribution network company in Uganda.[4] The shares of the stock of the company are listed on the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE) and are cross listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE).[5]


Umeme was formed in 2004 when the Government of Uganda sold Uganda Electricity Distribution Company Limited (UEDCL) to a consortium belonging to Globeleq (56%), a subsidiary of the Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC) of the United Kingdom and Eskom (44%), the electric generating company of South Africa.[6] The transfer of assets did not take place until 1 March 2005.[7] During 2006, the consortium formed by Globeleq and Eskom was restructured and Globeleq became the sole owner of Umeme.[8] As a result of internal restructuring within CDC, Actis Capital acquired ownership of the assets previously owned by Globeleq, thereby making Umeme a 100% subsidiary of Actis Capital. In May 2010, Umeme's communications director Charlotte Kemigyisha wrote an article in the Daily Monitor newspaper, calling for the execution of those convicted of electricity theft.[9]


Umeme is the largest energy distribution network company in Uganda, by customer numbers, area of coverage and by assets. As of December 2014, the company's total assets were valued at approximately US$410 million (UGX:1.212 trillion), with shareholder's equity of approximately US$113 million (UGX:313.7 billion).[3]

Recent developments[edit]

In December 2010, Umeme announced plans to invest US$32 million during 2011, in new substations, improvements in grid connectivity and the introduction of pre-payment systems.[10] In November 2013, the company announced that it had secured loans totaling US$190 million from the International Finance Corporation, Standard Chartered Bank and Stanbic Bank to fund grid expansion and reduce energy losses.[11]


Prior to October 2012, Umeme was wholly owned by Actis Capital, a subsidiary of the Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC) of the United Kingdom. CDC is a UK government-owned company, based in the United Kingdom, with investment assets mainly in the emerging markets of Africa, Asia and Latin America, but with its main emphasis in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. It has an asset base of US$4 billion, of which approximately 8% is currently in the energy sector. Umeme is its first investment in the distribution end of the power sector but CDC is actively pursuing acquisitions seeking to increase its investments in the emerging markets.

On 15 October 2012, Umeme became a listed company on the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE). A total of 622,378,000 shares, representing approximately 38% of its issued share capital, became listed on the Ugandan bourse in an Initial Public Offering (IPO).[12] The shares of the company started trading on the USE on 30 November 2012.[13] Umeme stock shares were cross-listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE), on 14 December 2012.[14] The company expects to use the proceeds from the IPO, estimated at about US$68 million (UGX:170 billion), to upgrade the distribution network, establish pre-paid metering and reduce energy distribution losses.[15][16]

As of December 2014 the 10 largest shareholders in the stock of the company are listed in the table below:[3]

Umeme Stock Ownership
Rank Name of Owner Percentage Ownership
1 Investec Asset Management 18.31
2 UMEME Holdings Limited 14.30
3 NSSF Uganda 14.27
4 CDSC Kenya Nominee 3.12
5 International Finance Corporation 2.78
6 The Africa Emerging Markets Limited 2.52
7 Utilico Emerging Markets Limited 2.48
8 SCB Mauritius Re: Allan Gray Africa (Rand) Equity Fund 1.95
9 Kattagat Trust 1.34
10 SCB Mauritius Re: Allan Gray Africa (Ex-SA) Equity Fund 1.30
11 Others through USE and NSE 37.62
Total 100.00

Board of directors[edit]

The Umeme Board of Directors has six members, of whom five are non-executive. Patrick Bitature, one of the non-executive directors, serves as the Chairman of the Board.[17]

Management Structure[edit]

Umeme is structured into twelve management departments, each headed by a senior manager. The senior managers form what is called the Executive Committee, whose members are the following, as of May 2014: [18]

Umeme Management Structure
Department Name of Manager Title of Officer
Office of the Managing Director Selestino Babungi Managing Director
Deputy Managing Director Sam Zimbe Deputy Managing Director
General Manager George van der Merwe General Manager Capital and Contracts Division
Finance To be determined Chief Financial Officer
Operations Management Florence Nsubuga Chief Operations Officer[19]
Corporate Development David Alderton Corporate Development Manager
Safety Phil Ball Chief Safety Officer
Technical Office Simbiso Chimbina Chief Technical Officer
Communication Henry Rugamba Head of Communications
Customer Service Aidan Byrne Head of Customer Service
Information Systems Eamon Furniss Chief Information Officer
Internal Audit Josepha Tibenderana Ndamira Head of Internal Audit

Leadership Structure[edit]

Under the Executive Committee, Umeme has twenty-five other managers who assist the Executive to implement company policy and run the company on a daily basis. In March 2015, Selestino Babungi was appointed Managing Director, taking over from Charles Chapman who served in that role from February 2009 until March 2015.[20]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "UMEME Board of Directors". Umeme. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  2. ^ Ladu, Ismail Musa (16 March 2015). "Umeme Gets New Chief Executive Officer". Daily Monitor (Kampala). Retrieved 16 March 2015. 
  3. ^ a b c d Umeme, . (26 March 2015). "Umeme 31 December 2014 Annual Report And Financial Statements" (PDF). Umeme Limited (Umeme). Retrieved 20 April 2015. 
  4. ^ "About Umeme Limited". Actis Capital. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  5. ^ Mugwe, David (1 August 2013). "Umeme Makes First Trade At NSE, Electronic Share Transfer Goes Live". The EastAfrican. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  6. ^ Busharizi, Paul (17 May 2004). "UEDCL Sold, $65 Million Injection Seen by 2010". New Vision. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  7. ^ Mare, Paul (16 August 2007). "An Insight Into Umeme Concession And Work". New Vision. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  8. ^ Kasita, Ibrahim (22 February 2007). "Umeme Owner Globeleq Up For Grabs". New Vision. Retrieved 6 February 2014. 
  9. ^ Kemigyisha, Charlotte (May 2010). "Make Electricity Vandalism A Capital Offence". Daily Monitor. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  10. ^ Ojambo, Fred (30 November 2010). "Umeme Uganda To Invest $32 Million In Power Substations, Systems In 2011". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  11. ^ Reuters, . (13 November 2013). "Ugandan Power Firm Umeme Gets $190 Million for Grid Expansion". Times Live (South Africa). Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  12. ^ Ilungole, Stephen (12 October 2012). "Regulators Finally Approve UMEME IPO". New Vision (Kampala). Retrieved 16 March 2015. 
  13. ^ Sanya, Samuel (21 October 2012). "UMEME Shares Selling Fast". New Vision. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  14. ^ Independent, Reporter (23 December 2012). "Umeme Cross Lists In Nairobi". The Independent (Uganda). Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  15. ^ Businge, Julius (9 November 2012). "Umeme IPO Oversubscribed". The Independent (Uganda). Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  16. ^ Ilungole, Stephen (16 October 2012). "Umeme IPO: 46% Shares Bought". New Vision. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  17. ^ "Members of Umeme Board of Directors". Umeme. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  18. ^ "UMEME Leadership Team". Umeme. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  19. ^ Ladu, Ismail Musa (13 February 2012). "Umeme To Realign Operations With Two New Appointments". Daily Monitor. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  20. ^ Ahimbisibwe, Fortunate (20 May 2009). "Electricity Utility Boss Resigns". New Vision. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 

External links[edit]