Put very simply, when Investors don't have enough money to buy a whole share, Fractional Share Rights (FSRs) give them the ability to invest whatever that available sum of money is, in a fraction of the share they want. For a quick explanation, jump to this Youtube video below.
Let's explain by way of example:
An investor named Joe has heard that Naspers is a great investment. Joe has managed to save R2 000 over a number of months, and now wishes to invest the entire sum of money in Naspers, by buying some shares.
On investigation, Joe discovers that a single Naspers share costs R1 800, so he knows that he can purchase one whole share, but is left confused as to what he should do with the R200 left over from that purchase (R2 000 - R1 800 = R200)? If he could, he'd also like that amount invested in Naspers, but wonders if he needs to wait until he has another R1 600?
The answer is no. The clever people at EasyEquities have devised a way to allow him to invest that R200 in Naspers as well.
How it works:
In order to give effect to his R200 investment (transaction) in Naspers, First World Trader (Pty) Ltd enters into a contract for difference (CFD) Transaction with Joe whereby First World Trader acts as a principal and issues Joe a CFD for a pro-rata percentage of the underlying whole share.
Through that CFD, Joe will have a contractual claim against First World Trader to the economic benefits and risks associated with ownership of Naspers (price movements and dividends) without having to own Naspers directly.
In short, fractional share rights (FSRs) give Joe all of the economic benefits of share ownership without owning the underlying share.
And the beauty of these FSRs is that if Joe continues to make further fractional investments in Naspers and ultimately ends up with a whole Naspers share, the CFD contract is closed out and the whole share is delivered to him.
Worth noting, is that unlike whole shares, FSRs do not carry any voting rights.