6. EQUITY
6.1 Share capital
 

Ordinary shares are classified as equity and the shares are fully paid up.

Shares acquired by Blue Label Telecoms for its own employees' equity compensation benefit scheme, as well as the shares procured by the subsidiaries in terms of this scheme, are accounted for as treasury shares in the Group statement of financial position.

   2020 
Number 
of shares 
   2019 
Number 
of shares 
2020 
R'000 
   2019 
R'000 
  
Authorised                      
Total authorised share capital of ordinary shares (par value of R0.000001 each) 2 000 000 000     2 000 000 000       
Issued                      
Balance at the beginning of the year  904 201 466     940 885 750       
Shares acquired during the year  (15 953 437)    (5 852 017)      
Share buy-back  —     (32 853 168) —       
Shares vested during the year  490 650     2 020 901       
Balance at the end of the year  888 738 679     904 201 466       
* Less than R1 000.

All issued shares are fully paid up.

The total number of shares in issue including shares held as treasury shares as at 31 May 2020 is 913 655 874 (2019: 913 655 874).

The Company acquired 15 953 437 (2019: 5 852 017) shares at an average price of R2.89 (2019: R7.24) on the JSE in order to grant forfeitable shares to employees and Directors as part of the Group's forfeitable share plan.

The amount paid to acquire these shares was R46 351 534 (2019: R42 378 078) and has been deducted from shareholders' equity. These shares are held as treasury shares, and netted off of share premium.

Refer to note 5.1 for details on the forfeitable shares.