The Board of Directors of Nestle Nigeria Plc has recommended a final dividend of N21.798 billon or N27.50 per share for the year ended December 31, 2017. This will bring the total dividend to N33.687 billion or N42.50 per share for the year.
The total dividend indicates 99 per cent payout of the profit after tax of N33.724 billion recorded for the year.
According to the audited results made available last Friday, Nestle Nigeria Plc reported gross revenue of N244.2 billion, up 34.2 per cent, from N181.9 billion recorded in 2016. Cost of sales went up 34.4 per cent to N143.3 billion, from N106.6 billion, making the firm to close with a gross profit of N100.9 billion, which was 33.9 per cent higher than the N75.3 billion recorded in 2016. Marketing and distribution expenses rose from N28.77 billion to N35.15 billion, while administrative expenses rose from N8.33 billion to N10 billion in 2017. Net finance costs fell by 46.8 per cent from N16.7 billion to N8.9 billion. Profit before tax settled at N46.8 billion, showing a growth of 117 per cent compared with N21.5 billion recorded in 2016. Profit after tax grew faster by 325 per cent from N7.9 billion to N33.7 billion in 2017.
Hence, the directors recommended a total dividend of N42.50, which is 325 per cent higher than the N10.00 paid in respect of 2016 financial year.
The company had last year paid a low dividend due to a decline of 67 per cent in bottom-line. While the company grew its revenue by 20 per cent from N151.3 billion in 2015 to N181.9 billion in 2016, PAT fell from N23.7 billion to N7.92 billion due to impact of naira devaluation and expiration of the pioneer status among others.
But the stable foreign exchange has impacted positively on the company’s performance in 2017, which was reflected in the decline in cost of finance and eventually led to higher profitability for the year.
Commenting on the 2017 results, Nestle said it was pleased with the growth, which it attributed to multiple factors such as continued loyalty and trust of its consumers in its brands, the dedication of its people and the efficiency of its distribution network.
“In line with our strategic roadmap, we will continue to invest behind brands and route-to-market activities while proactively managing input cost pressures to stay on the growth path. We will continue delivering value to our shareholders with our commitment to provide high quality nutritious products to meet the needs and preference of our consumers,” the company said.