Operators Hail Forte Oil’s Inclusion in Morgan Stanley Capital International Index

21 May 2014

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Goddy Egene

Market operators have described the inclusion of Forte Oil PLC in the Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) Frontier Market 100 Index as a testament to the fundamentals and strong growth potential of the energy company.

Forte Oil has interests in petroleum marketing, power generation and upstream petroleum services.

They believe this inclusion will be a driver of imminent inflow of foreign direct investments that will compete strongly with local investment. They therefore urged Nigerian investors to take advantage of this development and increase their stake ahead of the growing appetite from offshore players.

MSCI, which is a leading provider of investment decision support tools to over 6,000 clients worldwide, ranging from large pension plans to boutique hedge funds, last week included Forte Oil and Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI) in the index.

The Equity Index provider is present in 23 countries and offers a range of products and services - including indexes, portfolio risk, performance analytics data and research.

The admission of Forte Oil PLC and ETI in the index was effected following the inclusion of 13 securities into the MSCI Frontier Markets Index, while 30 were deleted from the index.  Speaking on the implication of Forte Oil’s inclusion in the MSCI Frontier Market 100 Index, market operators who spoke to THISDAY  yesterday  commended the positive development.

For instance, the Managing Director of Crane Securities Limited, Mr. Mike Ezeh, said: “I am not surprised at the inclusion of Forte Oil in the MSCI Index. The turnaround in the fortunes of the oil products marketing firm in  recent times, the returns its share price has delivered and the strategies the board and management have put in place to sustain this outstanding performance, are clear indications that the future  is definitely bright for stakeholders of the company.”

Having returned 1,165 per cent to investors last year, Forte Oil’s shares have already appreciated by over 60 per cent year-to-date in 2014.  The company has also recorded a very strong financial performance in the first quarter of 2014, with a growth of 108 per cent in profit after tax (PAT) of  N1.1billion up from N530 million delivered in same period last year.

Forte  embarked on an aggressive growth plan and strategic expansion of its downstream operations in 2012 in its efforts to meet its objective of being the supplier of choice in the Nigeria’s energy market.

In addition to an exemplary strong performance, the company also acquired the 414 MW Geregu Power Plant under the federal government-led privatisation programme to divest public power assets. This strategic move has already impacted on the bottom-line with its power division contributing 44.13 per cent to the group’s revenue and profit-after-tax respectively in the first quarter of 2014.

Tags: Business, Nigeria, Featuered, Forte Oil Plc

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