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PwC survey identifies key priorities of Nigerian businesses amid Covid-19 pandemic

Business organizations in Nigeria have identified liquidity and the safety of their employees as priority business needs, as they grapple with the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic.

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PwC survey identifies key priorities of Nigerian businesses amid Covid-19 pandemic

Business organizations in Nigeria have identified liquidity and the safety of their employees as priority business needs, as they grapple with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. This was part of the findings of a survey conducted by a multinational professional services firm, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Nigeria.

The survey findings were disclosed during a recent webinar which was hosted by PwC, on the economic implications and policy response to Covid-19.

The survey had about 3000 respondents, ranging from managers to CEOs and business owners. When asked what their top business concerns were, 22.5% of them settled for liquidity, which is the availability of immediate cash to pay bills. This is especially important to them considering the disruption of business activities that have been experienced.

Meanwhile, 15.4% of the respondents identified the safety of their staff as a top priority. Note that this is a good indication that Nigerian businesses have a people-focused approach and are not just concerned about their profitability.

(READ MORE: Businesses most affected by COVID-19 outbreak)

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The third significant business concern identified was infrastructure for remote working. According to the survey, about 14.6% of the respondents stressed the need for access to electricity and internet connectivity.

While providing the results of the findings, Taiwo Oyedele, the Fiscal Policy Partner and West Africa Tax Lead at PwC Nigeria noted that 78.4% of businesses do not plan to lay off staff as a result of the crisis. Again, this is something optimistic. However, decisions to retain staff are often top management decisions and could mean that a good percentage of the respondents may not be privy to such plans by their organizations.

On the other hand, 21.6% of the respondents admitted that they will lay off staff due to the pandemic. Of this group, 55.3% do not think government intervention will influence their decisions on laying off staff. The rest, however, expressed their willingness to retain their employees if government intervention takes care of varying percentages of their staff wage bills.

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As part of its societal impact, PwC has said it will provide free business continuity support services to small businesses employing between 5 to 50 employees who undertake to retain all their staff during this period.

(READ MORE: COVID-19: How your business can provide superior customer service despite lockdown)

On investments, 56.7% of the respondents said they will delay their investment decisions while 19.4% said they will invest less. This shows that the much-needed investment to stimulate growth will be greatly impacted.

Meanwhile, 23.8% and 43.9% of the respondents think that the government’s interventions have either been grossly inadequate or just inadequate respectively. About 17.5% of the respondents expressed indifference to what the government has done. Only 14.4% agree that the government’s intervention has met their expectations. This clearly shows that both the federal and state governments need to do more in terms of palliatives.

The top two areas that respondents believe the government’s intervention should be focused are:

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  • Tax relief (30%)
  • Provision of loans at zero or low-interest rate (29.3%), and
  • Cash transfer to the poor (16.9%).

READ ALSO: PwC’s Andrew Nevin urges FG to provide more economic stimulus amid Covid-19

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Overall, the businesses surveyed agree that the private sector has a role to play in supporting the government’s fight against Covid-19. About 85.5% of the respondents suggested that they are best suited to provide support in the areas of relief items, equipment, and facilities. Only 10.7% indicated their willingness to donate cash to government.

Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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Business News

Nascon Allied Industries Plc: Increase in sale of goods boosts revenues

Nascon Allied Industries Plc recorded a boost from an increase in the sale of goods revenue-generating unit

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Nascon Allied Industries Plc recorded a boost from an increase in the sale of goods revenue-generating units, as total revenues increased slightly. The company reported revenues of N21.87 billion in 2020 (9months) – 4.01% increase compared to N21.03 billion in the corresponding period of 2019.

What you should know

Key highlights from 2020 (9months) results

  • Revenues increased by 4.01% from N21.03 billion to N21.87 billion YoY.
  • Revenues from sale of edible, refined, bulk grade salt; seasoning and vegetable oil, increased to N21.87 billion, +22.53% YoY.
  • Other income increased to N12.81 million, +27.43% YoY.
  • No revenue was recorded for freight income on the deliveries of salt and seasoning income-generating unit.
  • Gross profit increased to N8.96 billion, +74.56% YoY.
  • Operating profit increased to N3.64 billion +18.60% YoY.
  • Pre-tax profits increased to N3.47 billion, +16.63% YoY.
  • Post-tax profits increased to N2.29 billion, +13.27% YoY.
  • Earnings Per Share increased to 115 kobo, +12.75% YoY
  • Total assets increased to N44.36 billion, +45.79% YoY.
  • Total liabilities increased to N32.04 billion, +67.21% YoY.
  • Total equity increased to N12.32 billion, +9.35% YoY.

(READ MORE:Dangote’s NASCON Allied Industries Plc moves operation from Apapa)

Bottomline

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Nascon Allied Industries Plc recorded a boost from increase in sale of goods revenue-generating unit, but no revenue was recorded for its freight income on the deliveries of salt and seasoning revenue generating-unit.

Though companies have generally recorded decreased revenues in the last three quarters, mostly due to COVID-19; Nascon Allied Industries Plc was able to increase its total revenues and pre-tax profits in the period under consideration.

 

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Tech News

Instagram disables its “Recent” feature

Instagram has announced it remove the “recent” tab from hashtag pages on a temporary basis.

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COVID-19: Instagram cracks down on coronavirus AR effects, Instagram Tenders apology for fagging #EndSARS fake, Instagram has disabled the “Recent” feature for the forthcoming U.S election,

Instagram disclosed that it would remove the “Recent” tab from its hashtag pages for people in the United States of America.

The social networking and video sharing service stated this on its official Twitter handle. It said it is “doing this to reduce the real-time spread of potentially harmful content that could pop up around the election.”

What you should know

Nairametrics had reported on Instagram’s apology for its algorithm malfunction that led to the flagging of #EndSARS posts as fake.

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Instagram has also taken the following measures to ensure a successful November election.

  • The registration of 4.4 million votes this year through its flagship platform – Instagram and Messenger.
  • Serving as a means of information and tool to people in the US on the electoral process
  • The ban of any content that can thwart the success of the election.

(READ MORE:U.S dollar stable amid U.S holiday)

Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, said he was perturbed about the high risks for civil unrest in the US due to the upcoming presidential election.

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“I’m worried that with our nation so divided and election results potentially taking days or weeks to be finalized, there is a risk of civil unrest across the country.”

Furthermore, he disclosed on a call while discussing Facebook’s Q3 earnings, that “given this, companies like ours need to go well beyond what we’ve done before.”

Why this matters

The aim of the short-term decision is to decrease the spread of misinformation in the forthcoming US election.

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ENDSARS

#EndSARS: Police did not shoot protesters – IGP Adamu

The IGP has said that police officers acted professionally and exercised commendable restraints during the #EndSARS protests.

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The Inspector-General of Police, M.A Adamu, has said that officers of the Nigeria Police Force acted professionally and exercised commendable restraints during the protests, in a response to Amnesty International about police firing at protesters.

The IG disclosed this in a statement on Friday morning, saying reports on the shooting of protesters is not true.

What you should know

Amnesty International released a report on the 21st of October, 2020, saying it has confirmed “that the Nigerian army and police killed at least 12 peaceful protesters yesterday at two locations in Lagos. The killings took place in Lekki and Alausa, where thousands were protesting police brutality as part of the #EndSars movement.”

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President Muhammadu Buhari also disclosed last week that 51 civilians, 11 Police officers, and 7 soldiers have been killed in the unrest.

The IGP said today that, “Officers of the Nigeria Police Force acted professionally, exercised commendable restraints and some paid the supreme price for peace during the recent protests and ensuing violence in some parts of the country.

“The Amnesty Int’l report is untrue, misleading, and contrary to all available empirical evidence.

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“Even when the protests turned violent in some parts of the country, the officers still maintained utmost restraint and did not use excessive force in managing the situations.”

The IG added that 22 Police personnel were killed by hoodlums, with many more injured and that 205 police stations were attacked.

“Available reports show that twenty-two (22) police personnel were extra-judicially killed by some rampaging protesters and scores injured during the protests. Many of the injured personnel are in life-threatening conditions at the hospital.

“Two hundred and five (205) police stations and formations including other critical private and public infrastructure were also damaged by a section of the protesters,” he said.

The IG said Amnesty International failed to pay tribute to police officers who lost their lives in the violence and accused the organization of “discriminatory tendencies.”

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