(Bloomberg) -- E-payments firm Fawry for Banking & Payment Technology Services SAE is seeking to become the first Egyptian company listed in the U.S. as it pushes to widen its investor base.

Fawry’s board signed off on creating an American Depository Shares program and is also looking into a possible secondary offering in the U.S., the company said in a statement Thursday. Its shares fell as much as 7.5% after it also announced plans to raise 800 million Egyptian pounds ($50.9 million) through a rights issue.

Egypt’s digital payments market is booming as consumers scale back their cash use, spurring a surge in investment in the industry. Vodafone Egypt agreed last year to buy stakes in e-payments firms Bee and Masary while the state-owned provider EFIH soared in its trading debut in October.

“We’re seeing competition picking up in the sector in Egypt,” said Monsef Morsy, co-head of research at CI Capital in Cairo. “There are a lot of companies entering the market, and they have optimistic and aggressive plans going forward.”


Fawry’s shares jumped during the pandemic but are now more than 50% below their May peak.

Digital Payments Firm Strikes Gold in Egypt, Where Cash Is King

While the ADS program plans are welcome, that news was overshadowed by the announcement of the capital raise, said Ahmed Abou El Saad, managing director of Azimut Egypt Asset Management. 

“It’s a very good piece of news to give access to investors from other regions,” he said.

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