CMA warn against three firms in unregulated investment schemes 

Mr Keith Kalyegira says they have received complaints from the public about unregulated investment schemes. Photo / File 

What you need to know:

  • Capital Markets Authority warns that it is risky for investors to invest their money in schemes that are not regulated

The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has issued a warning against investing in unregulated investment activities after receiving public complaints about Capital Chicken, Veta Plan Chicken, and The Mall Fund.

Mr Keith Kalyegira, the CMA chief executive officer, said yesterday that they had received complaints from the public, noting that, “there have been question marks about the authenticity of the [investments they are offering], so we took interest in what is being discussed.”  However, he declined to discuss CMA’s next step, maintaining that the investments being offered had not been authorised. 

Ms Lyn Tukei, the CMA communications and public relations manager, said the regulator was “currently taking appropriate action to protect investors”, cited their mandate to promote a fair and efficient capital market.

Early this week, CMA issued a notice warning the public that the three companies had not sought approval to offer investment contracts. 

“It is important to note that in the absence of regulatory oversight, investors in unregulated investment activities have limited recourse in the event of unfair treatment, loss or other challenges,” the notice reads in part. 

However, in a Monday statement shared with Monitor, Mall Fund disassociated itself from the issued CMA notice, saying there had been confusion between The Mall Fund and Mall Fund. 

The statement indicated that Mall Fund is “a distinct and separate reputable brand” from The Mall Fund, which is a registered trademark of My Mall-SMC, incorporated in June 2020.  

SMC refers to a private company limited by shares or by guarantee, whose membership is reduced to one person. 

The Mall Fund, which has operations at Pioneer View, indicates that through its farm digital programme, specialises in agriculture, animal industry, and fisheries across the globe, offering investment plans for broilers, sugarcane and passion fruits, among others products at a fee of between Shs1m and Shs100m for three to 12 months at a return of 11 percent per month.  

Capital Chicken also distanced itself from CMA accusations, saying it operates as a farming partnership company and not an investment firm as indicated.   

“We partner with people, companies [and] groups to farm together and share profits,” a statement posted on its social media pages, reads in part, noting that under its partnership farming programme, it is duly registered as Capital Chicken SMC, operating a seven-acre poultry farm in Mukono District. 

Its terms show that a farmer agrees to provide funds to the company towards acquisition of more chicken on behalf of the farmer for the furtherance of the success of the poultry project. 

The money is invested, which, after resale, returns a profit of between 48 percent and 60 percent per month. Investment plans range from Shs1m to Shs10m with a maturity of five months. 

We could not readily get a comment from Veta Plan Chicken.  

At risk 

CMA says, as the regulator, it has not reviewed or regulated the three companies’ investment activities, which puts investors’ money at risk. 

A number of Uganda have previously lost millions of money in what have come to be known as Ponzi schemes. 

Therefore, Ms Tukei said investors must be cautious of investment opportunities that are especially not regulated, noting that in the absence of regulatory oversight, investors in unregulated investment activities have limited recourse in the event of loss or other challenges.