Thursday, 24 September 2015

UACN SHAREHOLDERS GRANT REQUEST FOR N20BN FRESH CAPITAL AND N3.3BN DIVIDENDS

Shareholders of UAC of Nigeria Plc have endorsed the quest by the Board of Directors to raise additional N20 billion from the capital market to support its expansion strategy. They also approved payment of N3.3 billion dividends, which translates to N1.75 per ordinary share of 50 kobo each for the year ended December 31, 2014 as well as plan by the company to increase its authorised share capital from N1 billion divided into two billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each to N1.7 billion divided into three billion ordinary shares of 5o kobo each and 400 million preference shares of 50 kobo each.

The shareholders authorised the Board to raise the additional capital by way of Rights Issue and Private Placement. The company intends to offer 160.07 million ordinary shares by way of Rights to the existing shareholders in the proportion of one new share for every 12 ordinary shares previously held.

Addressing shareholders at the Annual General Meeting in Lagos, the Chairman, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, said the funds to be raised would be used to pursue the company’s plan to improve returns and address the high leverage position in two of its subsidiaries – UPDC and Portland Paints and Products Plc. He noted that it would address the funding needs for expansion in its Feeds and Logistics business as well as its other expansion plans.

Laying the financial results before the members, Udoma said despite the tough business environment, the company recorded a modest top-line growth of nine per cent from N78.7 billion in 2013 to N85.7 billion in 2014. Profit before taxation, according to him, was N14.1 billion compared to N13.9 billion of 2013.

He stressed that the company has continued to manage market dynamics and innovatively lead competition in its markets.

In his own words: “In the year under review and in line with our vision to be number one in our chosen markets, we achieved market leadership with our Vital Fish feed brand, which was introduced just three years ago. To further consolidate on our technology improvement initiative, capacity and efficiency in our operations, three new plants were commissioned including a new Feed Mill at the Ikeja plant of Livestock Feeds Plc, an automated Pie line for the Restaurants business and a new processing and packaging technology for Supreme Ice cream.”

Speaking on behalf of other shareholders, Sir Sunny Nwosu, National Coordinator, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN) commended the company for the financial performance and the 175kobo dividends. He enjoined the shareholders to ensure that they take up their rights to fully benefit from the various expansion plans. (vanguard)