C & I Leasing to Raise N3.3bn via Rights Issue, Bears Return to Market

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Andrew Otike-Odibi
Andrew Otike-Odibi

Goddy Egene

C & I Leasing Plc has applied to raise about N3.324 billion from existing shareholders to boost its operations and deliver higher returns. In a notification to market operators yesterday, the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), said C & I Leasing Plc would offer rights issue of 539,003, 333 to shareholders at N6 per share. The rights issue price showed a discount of about 21 per cent considering the N7.30 closing price of the stock yesterday.

The Managing Director/CEO of the company, Mr. Andrew Otike-Odibi had given indication to the capital raising exercise last July.

Speaking to the shareholders at the 28th annual general meeting(AGM) in Lagos, Otike-Odibi said: “The business is at a point where we need equity injection and management is working with financial advisers to look at different options that we can use to raise equity. One, it might be a rights issue. So we might be calling on you very soon to support the business by taking up your rights and getting capital into the business to help the business grow to new heights.” Otike-Odibi said.

The company had ended 2018 financial year with a profit after tax (PAT) of N438 million and paid a dividend of N104.3 million.

The Chairman of C & I Leasing Plc, Chief Chukwuma Okolo explained to the shareholders the performance was a result of increased operational efficiency, cost optimisation strategies and enhanced service delivery across the three major business lines which attest to the firm’s commitment to sustainable growth and undisputed market leadership in its chosen business.

Okolo also assured stakeholders that the outlook for 2019 remained positive for the company despite it being an election year.

“The board has laid down a solid foundation for growth, expansion and diversification, which is already yielding results as we remain consistent in improving the overall wellbeing of the company with initiatives that makes us leaders within our market space. In 2019, we plan to consolidate the progress made in the previous years by delivering a strong and sustainable performance that enhances optimal returns to shareholders,” Okolo said.

Meanwhile, the stock market closed lower as the bears returned pulling down the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index by 0.97 per cent, while market capitalisation shed N129bn to be at N13.3 trillion.