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Business News

Russia indicates interest in Nigeria’s energy sector

The Russian Federation has disclosed plans to enhance bilateral co-operation between with Nigeria to develop the latter’s energy sector.  

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The Russian Federation has disclosed plans to enhance bilateral co-operation with Nigeria by partnering to develop the latter’s  energy sector.  

The Russian Federation Ambassador to Nigeria, Alexey Shebarshin, who made this known, explained that his country is willing to collaborate with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) across Nigeria’s upstream, gas and power sectors. This he said while visiting the Group Managing Director, NNPC, Mele Kyari. 

In a statement issued by NNPC, Shebarshin stated that he visited to follow up on the conclusions drawn from the Russia-Africa Summit held in Sochi last year. He said that the Russian embassy in Nigeria was ready to increase the level of partnership between the two countries. 

[READ ALSO: Border Closure: Presidential task force inspects Nigeria-Niger Border (Opens in a new browser tab)]

“We are particularly interested in participating in Nigeria’s power infrastructure projects. 

 “We would also keep close track of the ongoing negotiations between the NNPC and Gazprom on the restoration of the bilateral cooperation that aims at reviving and solidify the venture between our two companies for gas infrastructure development in Nigeria.” Shebarshin said, 

Speaking further, the ambassador noted that he was ready to provide assistance to support the refinery rehabilitation focused project being executed by the NNPC and Russian-based company, Lukoil 

[READ MORE: UPDATE: NNPC is set to work with Russia’s Lukoil ]

Commenting on the development, Kyari expressed his appreciation towards the ambassador for the visit as he assured him of the NNPC’s commitment to partner the Russian embassy in Nigeria to ensure that the two countries benefit from the bilateral cooperation reached in Sochi, Russia. 

Kyari said; “As a national oil company, we are committed to growing Nigeria’s economy. We will set up communication channels with the Russian companies, Lukoil and Gazprom in particular, to promote this collaboration for the benefit of our two countries.” 

Why this matters: Nigeria is one of Africa’s leading crude oil producers, as the nation’s energy sector remains one of the most underdeveloped on the African continent. Refineries are inefficient and underperforming, thereby leading to over-dependence on importation of refined petroleum products to meet local demand. 

 This has been a long-standing problem, with lots of failed efforts to remedy it. It is, therefore, expected that Russia’s interest in developing the sector will help to profer solution. 

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Chidinma holds a degree in Mass communication from Caleb University Lagos and a Masters in view in Public Relations. She strongly believes in self development which has made her volunteer with an NGO on girl child development. She loves writing, reading and travelling. You may contact her via - [email protected]

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Companies

Nestle declares N28.1 billion as final dividend for 2020

The Board of Nestle Nigeria Plc has announced the payment of N28.1 billion to its shareholders as the final dividend for 2020.

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Nestle declares N28.1 billion as final dividend for 2020

The Board of leading consumer goods company, Nestle Nigeria Plc, has announced the payment of N28.1 billion to its shareholders as the final dividend for the period ended 31st December 2020.

According to the announcement published by the company on the website of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Nestle is expected to pay a final dividend of N35.50 per share for all the outstanding 792,656,252 ordinary shares of the company.

This brings the total dividend payout to qualifying shareholders to N28.14 billion.

The final dividend, however, will be paid electronically to shareholders on the 23rd of June, 2021, subject to appropriate withholding tax and approval at the Company’s Annual General Meeting.

Other key conditions outlined by the company for qualifying shareholders include:

  • Shareholders whose names appear on the registrar of members as of 21st of May, 2021 will be considered.
  • Qualifying Shareholders must have completed the e-dividend registration and must have mandated the Registrar (Greenwich Registrars) to pay their dividends directly into their bank accounts.
  • In line with this, the register of shareholders will be closed from 24th of May to 28th May 2021, to enable the registrar to process the dividends of Nestle’s shareholders.

In case you missed it

  • Nestle paid an Interim dividend of N25 per share to shareholders towards the end of 2020.
  • It is important to note that the addition of this to the final dividend of N35.5, puts Nestle’s total dividend for 2020 at N60.5 per share. This is 13.57% lower than the total dividend payout for 2019 (N70 per share).

What you should know

  • Nestle declared in its audited financial statement for 2020, that it made a profit before income tax of N60.6 billion in 2020. Indicating a decline of 14.74%, when compared with 2019 figures.
  • The company’s earnings per share (EPS) during the period under review was N49.47, 14.16% lower than 2019 EPS.

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Companies

MTN Nigeria declares largest ever revenue by a listed Nigerian entity for FY 2020

The strong revenue growth was basically due to its data-led segment as sales from the segment expanded by an impressive 51.5% Year to Year.

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UACN appoints Toriola as new Director 

MTN Nigeria recently announced another ground-breaking full-year turnover in the financial year of 2020, the highest ever recorded by a Nigerian listed entity.

Specifically, the telecom giant’s revenue expanded by 15.1% year-to-year to N1.3 trillion in the review period. The strong revenue growth was basically due to its data-led segment as sales from the segment expanded by an impressive 51.5% Year to Year.

  • Voice sales rose relatively by 5.6% year to year as the global switch to data-enabled communication subsisted.
  • MTN Nigeria Plc also announced a N5.90/share final dividend on impressive growth in its free Cash Flow for the financial year of 2020.
  • Notably, MTNN’s 4G network now covers 60.1% of the population compared to 43.8% in 2019.
  • According to MTN Nigeria, the suspension of new SIM registration enforced in mid-December did not have a material effect on the voice segment, which managed a 10.6% YoY revenue growth in Q4’20 (vs 7.0% YoY in Q3’20).

READ: MTN Group set to sell-off its 20% shareholding in BICS for $121million

In contrast, data revenue growth notably moderated to 37.5% YoY in Q4’20 compared to 55.5% YoY in Q3’20.

In a research report released by CardinalStone, the most valuable telecom company’s margin was adversely affected by currency devaluation;

“Margins were adversely affected by the effect of naira devaluation and expenses associated with new sites’ roll-out to boost 4G network coverage in FY’20.

“On the former, we note that MTNN expanded the scope of its service agreement with IHS Holding Limited and changed the reference rate for converting USD tower expenses to NAFEX (vs CBN’s official rate previously). Thus, over the full-year period, the company’s operating margin contracted by 1.9 ppts YoY to 31.7%,” the report stated.

READ: Analysis: Airtel is winning the data war

Deal book 300 x 250

The company’s margin was also negatively affected by the higher cost of borrowing and the ultra-low rates prevailing at Nigeria’s debt market;

“Net finance cost increased by 25.4% YoY on the impact of higher borrowings and lower interest on investment in government securities.

“Borrowings rose by over 26.3% to N521.2 billion in FY’20, after the company notably issued its N100 billion Commercial paper in June 2020. The effect of higher borrowings combined with a tax increase (a consequence of lower investment allowance and exempt income) to keep after-tax profit growth subdued at 0.9% YoY.”

That being said, in spite of its impressive growth in revenue the Stock was trailing by 3.28% trading at N174 per share.

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