More than 6 million shares in MTN Zakhele, valued at more than R600 million, had changed hands since the opening of over-the-counter trade in November last year, the empowerment scheme said at its annual general meeting on Monday. MTN Zakhele, which has a 4 percent stake in cellular operator MTN, said it continued to strengthen its financial position and deliver meaningful value to its shareholders, with the share price trading at about six times its original price. MTN Zakhele chairman Thulani Gcabashe said the scheme celebrated its three-year anniversary in November last year, a key milestone as it opened its over-the-counter trading platform allowing black people to trade Zakhele shares. “The scheme received a 9.4 percent increase in dividend income during the year and achieved significant savings from the refinancing of some of its debt, contributing to a successful year,” he said. Gcabashe said trading had been robust and that R2.5m of Zakhele shares was traded on average a day. “Zakhele now has more than 110 000 shareholders, most of whom are individual shareholders who own 500 shares or less.” – Ayanda Mdluli