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Exclusive interview with Gerase M. Kamugisha, Chief Executive of Orbit Securities Company Limited

Founded in 1996, Orbit Securities Company Limited (ORBIT)  is a leading Stock Broking firm at the DSE. Global Banking & Finance Review interviewed Chief Executive and found member, Gerase M. Kamugishato to find out about the company’s success and plans for the future.

Orbit is considered a leading financial service player in Tanzania, what unique services do you provide in this market and which do you specialise in?

Orbit is licensed by the Capital Markets and Securities Authority (CMSA) as a Stockbroker/Dealer, Investment Advisor and Fund Manager. We also have a license from the Social Security Regulator that enables us to manage funds on behalf of Social Security Schemes operating in Tanzania under license from the regulator.

Orbit works in all these areas, although stock-broking and advisory have a slight edge over fund management. This is mostly on account or market realities on the ground.

You have commanded the majority market share in stockbroking among 13 licensed players in the market, what would you say has been critical to your success?

Gerase M. Kamugisha, Chief Executive, Orbit Securities Company Limited
Gerase M. Kamugisha, Chief Executive, Orbit Securities Company Limited

We simply offer the best service to our customers. Orbit believes in allowing the customer to make his own investment decision, and let the broker execute the orders based on customer decision, as expeditiously as possibly doable. We try our best to provide the customers with all relevant information needed for sound investment decisions. Orbit believes it is an extension of each of its customer’s investment office, canvassing the market for opportunities and sharing the information that benefits the customer.

What is your footprint across Tanzania? Do you have plans to expand your footprint in the future?

We are the only Stock Broker in the country to have established representative offices in all major urban centres across the country. But with increased use of technology, we see much simpler and cost-effective interaction with our upcountry customers. This has therefore slowed down the roll out of outposts, while strengthening our remote engagement vectors to ensure we are always easily accessible and maintain close relationship with our customers wherever they are.

Orbit also boasts of a very wide international network of partners that allows investors from many countries in Africa, Europe Asia and the US to access the Tanzania market.

How do you help your clients adapt to technological innovation and upgrading?

 Technology is not only disrupting industries that cling onto legacy ways of doing business, it is also imperative to help firms survive in the short term, to streamline where needed, and to thrive looking further forward. Technology is opening up previously unimaginable opportunities, as it enables us to offer new products to the investing community and reach many more potential investors. Innovation is an ongoing play at Orbit.

To be able to help our customers cope the technological changes we implement, we know that we must prepare our people first before we can expect them to help others come along. Leaps to new technology must have the buy in of all our people.

What strategies do you have in place to sustain your market position and withstand professional competition in the country?

 Orbit continues to work with the strategy that has served us very well hitherto in order to continually grow our market share, even as we have seen the number of players increase from 5 to 13 over the past decade. Orbit has been the leading broker in terms of value of trades and number of completed advisory projects in each of the last 14 years. Reflecting appreciation of our strong institutional practices and market activities, we have earned the DSE Broker of the Year Award each time it was given by an independent panel commissioned by the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange Plc. Other awards received by us include from respected agencies like Global Banking and Finance Review, Capital Finance International (CFi), Business Initiatives Directions, and The Socrates Committee of Oxford, UK. These awards reflect the fruits from our commitment to continual improvement in the service offered to customers, all of which is anchored on investment in people.

For us, the awards are a cause for celebration, but also a definition of the magnitude of the challenge we face, for we have given our stakeholder a benchmark for their expectations. We must deliver and surpass, whenever possible, these expectations. We also know that our counterparts in the market are striving to catch up, learning from our successes. So, we continue investing in our human capital through training and recruitment, technological adaptations and leveraging, and expansion of our outreach through partnerships, especially beyond the Tanzania borders.