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Lafarge approves the sale of its South African Subsidiary for $316 million

The shareholders of Lafarge Africa Plc have collectively approved the proposed sale of Lafarge South Africa Holding Limited (LSAH) to LafargeHolcim Group for the sum of $316.2 million.

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Lafarge Factory Plant, Lafarge

The shareholders of Lafarge Africa Plc have collectively approved the proposed sale of Lafarge South Africa Holding Limited (LSAH) to LafargeHolcim Group for the sum of $316.2 million.

The approval was reportedly announced at the company’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) which happened in Lagos on Monday. Speaking on the approval of the proposed sale of its South African subsidiary, the company’s Chairman, Mr Mobolaji Balogun, disclosed that LSAH sale would be beneficiary to all shareholders.

The details: According to Balogun, the sale would ultimately enhance the shareholders’ value in Lafarge Africa Plc. He stressed that this is of utmost importance for the company’s board.

The Chairman went further to state that the transaction, alongside the company’s transformation which had been undergoing processes for 3years, would ensure that the company does not have any foreign currency debt.

“The process of transformation of this company, which we undertook some three years ago, is now moving very swiftly toward solid foundation. Over the last three years, we have succeeded in reducing the company’s debts by over 1.1 billion dollars through the support of shareholders.”

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Shareholder Investment: While further reacting to the approved deal, the company’s Chairman disclosed the following conclusion to sell off its subsidiary, shareholders’ loan of $293 million will be completely paid off.

“Following the conclusion of the proposed sale, Lafarge Africa’s shareholder’s loan of 293 million dollars as at July 31, the only existing foreign currency loan in the books of the company, will be completely paid off.

“Over and above that, because the entity in South Africa also have some substantial debt, when that sale is completed on July 31, it will also lead to the deconsolidation of around 115 million dollars debt related to Lafarge South Africa.”

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Debt Reduction:  Speaking on one of the reasons for the sale, the Chairman revealed that the impact of the deal will bring about a reduction in Larfarge’s debt of about $470 million. It was also revealed that the reduction in the company’s debt is pertinent to the prospect for dividend distribution.

READ:IMF says its GDP growth and Inflation rates are more reliable than FG’s

“So, the total impact of the transaction on our debt is a reduction of something in the region of 470 million dollars. “With the sale of LSAH, as proposed by the board to shareholders, the only debt that will remain on the books of the company will be the second tranche of the corporate bond due for redemption in June 2021.

“It will also include the subsidised loan in respect of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Power Intervention Funds through the Bank of Industry (BoI). This significant reduction in debt holds prospects for dividend distribution”

On the company’s free float deficit on the nation’s bourse, Balogun expressed the company’s commitment to comply with all requirements. He acknowledged that the company is on the premium board of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) and there are two rules to the free float compliance.

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The Outlook: Speaking on the sale, Managing Director Lafarge Africa, Mr. Michel Puchercos, assured that the management is determined to deliver on the trust expressed by the shareholders.

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“We are delighted with the understanding by our shareholders on the need to focus on our business in Nigeria. The approval of the proposed sale of Lafarge South Africa by the shareholders will cut debts service obligation and curtail substantially financial charges which will have a positive impact on liquidity and the opportunity to expand our operations in Nigeria.”

READ FURTHER: Nigeria’s investment outlook and Lafarge’s rights issue

Samuel is an Analyst with over 5 years experience. Connect with him via his twitter handle

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Energy

FG set to create at least 5 million jobs for youths in the power sector – Minister of Power 

FG is set to create at least 5 million jobs for the youths, through its 5 million solar power initiative and other projects.  

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Consortium of Western investors to inject upwards of $5 billion in Nigeria's renewable energy sector, Power: Nigeria's deal with Siemens - the birth of a new era?

The Minister of Power has disclosed that the Federal Government of Nigeria is set to create at least 5 million jobs for the youths, through its 5 million solar power initiative and other projects.  

This was disclosed by Engr. Sale Mamman, The Minister of Power, during a stakeholder meeting in Jalingo, the Taraba state capital, where he addressed youths on the need to foster peace and harmony. 

Mamman, stated that in line with the demands of the youths, the Federal Government is set to create massive job opportunities for Nigerian youths in the power sector through its 5 million solar power initiative. 

This initiative includes the five million Solar Home System (SHS) project, the Mass Metering Scheme, among others. 

The minister lauded the youths for making their voices heard on developmental issues, He urged the youths to shun violent protest while giving the President a chance to implement their demands and other ongoing robust projects on youth empowerment. 

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What they are saying 

Speaking on the initiative to immerse 5 million Nigerian youths into the power sector, the minister said: 

“Plans are ongoing to kick start this and it is being designed to ensure that majority of the firms and the installers are Nigerian youths. This is also part of the commitment of President Muhammadu Buhari’s focus on lifting 100 million people out of poverty within 10 years. 

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“From the briefings I have received so far, the youths are taking up opportunities in this aspect as well as in renewable energy. This is another way the government will be empowering young Nigerians as the local assembly; installation and the maintenance of these meters are largely handled by our industrious youths.” 

“The minister urged the youths to vigilant and resist and attempt by some people to use them to incite violence for their sinister motive, noting that the Federal Government was tailoring more programmes for the youths through the Siemens Presidential Power Initiative and in building capacity on renewable energy.” 

“There is the assurance of Mr. President that Nigerians will be beneficiaries of the Siemens project which will turn around the power supply situation of Nigeria. When this happens, industries will be revived and SMEs driven by youths will thrive more. 

What you should know 

  • The initiative is expected to commence with a target for one-million-meter installation at least by December.  
  • The implementing agencies of the initiative are the Rural Electrification Agency and the Niger Delta Power Holding Company. 
  • However, the Central Bank of Nigeria is supporting local firms and Meter Asset Providers on financing the initiative. 
  • The National Power Training Institute of Nigeria (NAPTIN) is expected to play an active role in order to ensure that more youths become solar power installers and dealers to create a whole new trend of skills for self-empowerment. 

Why this matters 

The 5 million Solar project initiative will be implemented through the Economic Sustainability Plan steered by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, and it is expected to create opportunities for manufacturers of solar panels, installers, revenue collection agents and technicians. 

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This initiative is expected to reduce the level of unemployment in Nigeria, and cater to demands for better opportunities by the youths, through self-employment. 

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ENDSARS

#EndSARS: Lagos State needs N1 trillion to rebuild losses – Gbajabiamila

Gbajabiamila has said that the Lagos State Governor told him that the state would need N1 trillion for the reconstruction of destroyed assets.

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Closing of Nigerian-owned shops in Ghana must be dealt with decisively - Femi Gbajabiamila, Lagos State needs N1 trillion for reconstruction - Femi Gbajabiamila

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila has disclosed that Lagos State will need about N1 trillion for the reconstruction and repair of the properties and infrastructure that was vandalized and destroyed by hoodlums.

Gbajabiamila disclosed this while responding to questions from State House Correspondents after the assessment visitation of some of the properties that were destroyed during the protest.

What you should know

The #EndSARS protest which started as a peaceful demonstration by thousands of youths, degenerated into chaos after the protests were hijacked by hoodlums. The distasteful actions of hoodlums and arsonists have seen properties worth billions of naira vandalized, destroyed and razed down.

One of the consequences of these events was reported by Nairametrics as the Lagos State Government revealed that 27 of the burnt Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) vehicles in the Oyingbo and Ojodu Berger areas of the state cost $200,000 each, while 57 of them cost $100,000 each, which gives a total of N3.9 billion.

(READ MORE: Lagos to support owners of looted, vandalised stores)

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What they are saying

According to information gathered by The Punch, the Speaker said, “The House of Representatives will do all it can to compensate all those who suffered brutality, including policemen that lost their lives in the process.

“However, we want to know what exactly happened at the Lekki Toll Gate. The judicial panel must reveal this. However, I want to encourage Nigerians to allow peace to reign.

“I learnt from the governor of Lagos State that it will take N1trn to rebuild what had been lost and asked him what’s the budget size of the state, he said about N1trn. You can see we are moving backwards.

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“Hence, we must consider the consequences of our actions before embarking on any venture. I, therefore, appeal to the youth to allow peace to reign henceforth. I still believe in the unity of Nigeria.

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ENDSARS

#EndSARS: NBC fines AIT, Channels and Arise TV over use of “unverifiable” footages

The NBC has sanctioned three major Nigerian television stations over their reportage of recent unrest across the country.

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NBC slams N5 million fine on Nigeria Info over Mailafia's inciting comments

The National Broadcasting Commission, NBC, has fined Nigerian media houses including AIT, Channels TV and Arise News, claiming they used unverifiable video footages from social media to cover the #EndSARS protests.

This was disclosed in a report by AIT on Monday afternoon. According to media reports, the regulators imposed various fines on Arise TV, African Independent Television (AIT) and Channels Television between N2million and N3million.

“The National Broadcasting Commission has sanctioned Africa Independent Television, AIT, Arise TV and Channels for what it calls, a gross violation of the broadcast code, top of which is the use of unverifiable online video footages on the social media,” AIT said.

The Acting Director-General of the commission, Armstrong Idachaba, warned that further sanctions will be harsher and announced that the owners of AIT, DAAR Communications would be fined separately for alleged reports of a fire incident at the National Christian Centre.

The sanction according to Idachaba, will be a fine of not less than N2 million.

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The NBC had warned last week that broadcasters must “perform the role of a peace agent by adhering to the principle of responsibility, accuracy and neutrality” in reporting the protests.

More details later..

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