The Managing Director/CEO of Nigerian Breweries Plc, Mr. Nicolaas Vervelde, Thursday said the company’s robust dividend payment policy was informed by the need to always satisfy shareholders of the company. The company is paying a total dividend of N38 billion for the year ended December 31, 2015, which translates to N4.80 per share. The dividend is almost 99 per cent of the earning per share (EPS) of N4.82.
Explaining the company’s dividend policy at the pre-annual general meeting media briefing in Lagos, Vervelde said before the board decides on the amount of dividend to pay for a year, it looks at the strength of balance sheet and cash requirement.
According to him, the company has a strong balance and has little need for cash now, hence the dividend recommended for the shareholders in 2015.
“We only hope that the dividend we recommended will be appreciated by our shareholders because we believe it is good for them considering the current economic situation,” he said.
Vervelde said 2015 was challenging with reduced consumer purchasing power and increased cost of doing business mainly due to inflation and devaluation.
“Notwithstanding, our twin agenda of cost leadership and market leadership supported by innovation helped us to maintain strong results and deliver good returns on investment to our shareholders,” he said.
He said the company’s products remain leaders in their individual markets, assuring that going forward, that positive trend would be sustained.
Already, Nigerian Breweries has begun 2016 on positive note, recording growth in revenue and bottomline. The company recorded a profit after tax (PAT) of N10.45 billion for the first quarter ended March 31, showing an increase of four per cent above the N10.10 billion recorded in the corresponding period of 2015.
The company explained that growth in revenue was a reflection of its strong and effective route to market, increased sales during the festive Easter period as well as higher number of sales days in the period as against the lower number of days recorded in the corresponding period of 2015 due to the general elections.