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Companies

Unilever Overseas increases stake in Unilever Nigeria Plc

The acquisition of the additional shares adds substantially to its investment in the company.

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Unilever Overseas increases stake in Unilever Nigeria Plc

Unilever Overseas Holdings B.V, the majority shareholder of Unilever Nigeria Plc, has increased its stake at its Nigerian subsidiary with the purchase of over 17 million additional shares on August 10, 2020.

This disclosure was made in a notification that was sent to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) by the food and personal care products manufacturer. The corporate disclosure was signed by the company’s General Counsel/Company Secretary, Abidemi Ademola.

Insider disclosures are reported on the NSE as a regulatory requirement, especially when a major shareholder or director of a publicly quoted company purchases its shares.

READ ALSO: Unilever is committed to Africa despite under-performance by Nigerian unit  

The acquisition of the additional shares adds substantially to Unilever Overseas’ investment in the company. Prior to this time, it is already the single largest investor with over 70% shareholding in the company.

Analysis of this current acquisition shows that Unilever Overseas Holdings B.V. increased its stake in the firm with the purchase of 17,023,490 ordinary shares at N12 per share. The purchase consideration for this transaction, which was done on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, is put at approximately N204.3 million.

Unilever Nigeria closed at N13 per share on Friday, August 14, on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange with a market capitalization of about N71.81 billion. The multinational firm has about 5.75 billion outstanding shares with Unilever Overseas Holding B.V. as the majority shareholder.

READ MORE: Mutual Benefits to raise N2 billion after breaking dividend drought

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Insider purchases are usually an indication of how shareholders perceive the company’s valuation. It could also mean possible capital raise towards the strengthening of their existing holdings and some other things.

Unilever Nigeria Plc, which specializes in the manufacturing and marketing of food and care products, has been experiencing some turbulent times as it has been faced with the harsh business environment in recent times.

In its recently released half-year unaudited financial result for 2020, its revenue dropped to N14 billion as against the N23.4 billion that was recorded for the corresponding period in 2019. The firm made a loss of N1.63 billion for the half-year 2020 as against a profit of N1.9 billion for the corresponding period in 2019.

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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Appointments

Airtel Nigeria announces appointment of Surendran as new Chief Executive Officer

Airtel Nigeria, has announced the appointment of Mr C. Surendran as the new MD/CEO with effect from August 1, 2021.

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Like MTN, is Airtel Nigeria considering listing?

Telecommunications giant, Airtel Nigeria, has announced the appointment of Mr C. Surendran as the new Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer with effect from August 1, 2021.

Surendran would be replacing the outgoing Managing Director and Chief Executive of Airtel Nigeria, Olusegun Ogunsanya, who has been elevated to the position of Chief Executive Officer of Airtel Africa Plc with effect from October 1, 2021.

According to a report from the News Agency of Nigeria, this disclosure is contained in a statement issued by Airtel on Wednesday, May 5, 2021, in Lagos.

READ: Airtel Africa signs new $500 million loan with Bank of America, HSBC, others

The statement says that Surendran would also be appointed to the Executive Committee (ExCo) as Regional Operating Director, reporting to the CEO of Airtel Africa plc, and onto the Board of Airtel Networks (Nigeria) Limited.

Airtel in its statement said, “Surendran has been with Bharti Airtel since 2003 and has contributed immensely in various roles across customer experience, sales and business operations.

He was the Chief Executive Officer of Karnataka, which is the largest circle in Airtel India, with over one billion dollars in revenue.

Surendran delivered an exceptional performance with significant movement in Revenue Market Share (RMS) over the last few years, currently at 54 percent. He has over 30 years of business experience, including 15 years at Xerox.’’

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Airtel said that Surendran would transition into his new role from June 1, 2021, and spend the time onboarding into the business until July 31, 2021.

READ: Meet the latest billionaires on the Nigerian Stock Exchange

In case you missed it

It can be recalled that a few days ago, Airtel Africa Plc, a leading provider of telecommunications and mobile money services in Nigeria and 13 other countries, announced the appointment of Mr Olusegun Ogunsanya as the new Chief Executive Officer, following the notice of retirement given by the current Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Raghunath Mandava, to the Board.

In the notification sent by Airtel Africa to the Nigerian Exchange, Ogunsanya is expected to join the board of Airtel Africa with effect from October 1, 2021.

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Companies

Our First Bank loan is being serviced, reduced by 30% in 2 years – Honeywell Group

The credit facilities accessed from First Bank were granted after due negotiations, with the necessary documentation and in line with regulatory policies and industry standards.

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Billionaire watch: Oba Otudeko’s stakes in Firstbank and Honeywell are worth N10.3 billion

The Honeywell Group has said that its loan with First Bank is being serviced as the conglomerate had reduced the facility by 30% in the last two and half years.

This was disclosed by the Group via a statement issued on Sunday and seen by Nairametrics.

According to the statement, the company and the bank have had a professional business relationship since 1975, which preceded the group’s investment in the bank over a decade later.

According to the Honeywell Group, the credit facilities accessed from First Bank were granted after due negotiations, with the necessary documentation and in line with regulatory policies and industry standards.

The Group further explained that following agreed terms, its facilities are adequately secured with First Bank with collaterals in place at over 170% of forced sales value and 230% at open market value.

It stated, “In 2015, First Bank under the directive of the Central Bank of Nigeria, drew our attention to a 2004 circular (BSD/9/2004) which requires that insider related facilities must not exceed 10% of paid-up share capital.

Based on this directive we subsequently entered negotiations with the bank to agree on an appropriate repayment structure and the final negotiated position was duly approved by the CBN.

In addition to the above, First Bank, on the directive of CBN, requested additional security in the form of FBN Holdings Plc shares held by the Chairman of Honeywell Group, Dr Oba Otudeko citing a 2001 circular. This was duly provided through an authorisation to place a lien on the shares.”

Honeywell Group has continued to meet all its obligations on its facilities with the bank according to agreed terms and has reduced its exposure by nearly 30% in 2.5 years. The facilities were charged at market rate and the bank continues to earn significant interest therefrom.”

What you should know

  • Nairametrics had reported when the Central Bank of Nigeria directed Honeywell to fully repay its obligations to First Bank within 48 hours, warning that failure to do so would cause the CBN to take regulatory measures against the insider borrower and the bank.
  • The Chairman of Honeywell Group, Oba Otudeko, also served as Chairman of FBN Holdings Plc until he was asked by the apex bank to go along with other directors on Thursday.
  • The apex bank had noted in a letter last Wednesday that First Bank had yet to comply with regulatory directives on divesting its interest in Honeywell despite several reminders.
  • Also, the CBN asked First Bank to forward evidence involving the divestment of interest in Honeywell Flour Mills and Bharti Airtel Nigeria Ltd within 90 days.

Download (PDF, 525KB)

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