… As Shareholders Gets N1.50 Dividend
The board of directors of Lafarge Africa Plc on Wednesday May 16, 2018, received shareholders’ authorization to raise additional capital of up to N100 billion for business growth. The approval was given at the company 59th Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Lagos.
The money is expected to be raised through an offer of debt or equity in the domestic or international capital markets, to be carried out in such manner, at such time, for such consideration and upon such terms and conditions as the board of directors may deem fit and subject to regulatory approval.
The plan to raise fresh capital is coming barely a year after the company successfully raised N131.6 billion through right issue, which was 100 percent subscribed and LafargeHolcim as part of its subscription converted some $261 million from the debt owed it, to equity.
Commenting on the company performance and the need for additional capital, Lafarge Africa Chairman Mobolaji Balogun said there is need to address urgent issue of the capital structure of the company and in particular the foreign currency debt including shareholder loans owed to their major shareholder LafargeHolcim, which peaked at around $600 million at the end of 2016.
On shareholders concern about the company leaving Nigeria, Balogun explained that the company is committed to investment in Nigeria, stressing that in the next 12 months shareholders will start seeing the effects of the turnaround and improvements in its subsidiaries in South Africa. He noted that Unicem contributed significant amount to the group earnings in 2017 financial year. Adding that other costs of operations that went up will be reduce as they applied cost management and leadership.
One of the key highlight of the meeting was the approval of N1.50 kobo dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday May 16, 2018, to shareholders whose names appears in the register of members at the close of business on Friday May 20th April 2018. The dividend is net of applicable taxes and represents a 45 kobo increase per share on the 2016 dividend.