The shares of Nigerian Breweries Plc rose further tuesday as investors increased demand in a bid to benefit from the final dividend of N2.58 per share recommended for the year ended December 31, 2016. Nigerian Breweries Plc thus closed as the second highest price gainer in percentage terms and the highest gain in absolute terms. The stock gained N5.19 or 4.3 per cent to close at N125.00 per share.
Market operators said some investors are impressed with the final dividend recommended by the company despite a decline in profit for the year.The directors have recommended a final dividend of N20.457 billion, which translate to N2.58 per share, bringing total dividend to N28.386 billion or N3.58 per share.
Besides, the directors of the company have also made a recommendation to the shareholders to receive new ordinary shares of in the company instead of the final dividend.
Tthe company recorded a revenue of N313.743 billion in 2016, up from N293.9 billion in 2015. Cost of sale rose from N149.73 billion to N178.218 billion. Marketing and distribution expenses also rose from N58.45 billion to N61.312 billion. While the company brought down administrative expenses, finance cost increased by 66 per cent from N8.217 billion to N13.645 billion. However, this increase was majorly driven by net foreign exchange loss of about N7.552 billion, compared to N752 million in 2015.
Following the huge forex loss, Nigerian Breweries Plc ended the year with profit before tax of N39.675 billion, down from N54.514 billion in 2015 and PAT of N28.416 billion as against N38.05 billion in 2015.
The Company Secretary/Legal Adviser of Nigerian Breweries Plc Mr. Uaboi Agbebaku, yesterday explained in a statement that the 100 per cent dividend payout is coming at a time the results of the company were impacted by high inflation and scarcity of foreign exchange in the macro-economic environment.
According to Agbebaku, the company was able to end the year with a positive result due to its twin agenda of cost leadership and market leadership supported by innovation.
“Although the operating environment in 2017 is expected to be similar to 2016, the company remains confident that it is well positioned to adapt to the operating environment as required, and stay committed to delivering a good return on investment to shareholders,” Agbebaku said.