Shareholders of Unilever Nigeria Plc last Thursday commended the company’s board and management for their commitment to growth as the company recommended dividend of N8.62 billion for the year ended December 31, 2018. The dividend, which translates to 150 kobo per share, was higher than the 50 kobo paid the previous year.
The elated shareholders approved the dividend pay-out even as they charged the management to remain focused despite the challenging economic landscape in Nigeria.
Addressing the shareholders at the 43rd annual general meeting (AGM) in Lagos, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Unilever, His Royal Majesty Nnaemeka Achebe, said the company has again demonstrated business resilience.
According to him, notwithstanding the pressure and disruption in the business operating landscape, Unilever Nigeria Plc’s fundamentals held strongin2018.
“Our company’s performance attests to the durability and resilience of the Unilever brand. The company made good strides in its growth strategy with results showing decent performance on key financial and performance indices.
“Turnover from continuing operations grew by nine per cent from N85 billion in 2017 to N92 billion 2018. Earnings per share increased by three per cent from N1.78 per share in 2017 to N1.84 per share in 2018. Profit after tax from continuing operations increased by 29 per cent from N7.1 billion in 2017 to N9.1 billion in 2018. Clearly, the results are, once again, a reflection of our Company’s entrenched values of creating a brighter future for our citizens through brands that make them feel good, look good and get more out of life,” he said.
He disclosed that in 2018, company stepped up investments behind its brands, with significant spend on innovations and continued digitisation of its operations. “Our company raised its level of investment in manufacturing capacity, upgraded its plant for better and higher capacity, and drove efficiencies in all aspects of the business. The resultant effect was over heads cost reduction, streamlined administrative costs and return on marketing investments which enabled us to invest in more productive areas. The board remains confident that our company’s strategy is well placed to capture current and emerging growth opportunities,” he said.
Looking ahead, Achebe said their commitment to continue to contribute to a fairer and socially inclusive world, improve health and wellbeing and improve health of the planet remains resolute.