By Goddy Egene
UAC of Nigeria Plc (UAC) has announced its audited results for the year ended December 31, 2020, showing a profit of N3.927 billion as against a loss of N9.256 billion in 2019.
The top-line showed a revenue of N81.357 billion, up by three per cent to N79.202 billion in 2019. Profit before tax stood at N5.121 billion in 2020, while PAT printed at N3.927 billion.
Earnings per share was 92 kobo compared with negative 183 kobo in 2019. The board of directors therefore recommended a dividend of 120 kobo. It comprises 65 kobo ordinary and 55 kobo special dividend.
Commenting on the results and corporate actions, Group Managing Director, Fola Aiyesimoju, stated: “UACs objective is to generate attractive long-term, risk-adjusted returns for our shareholders. I am delighted that the board approved N7.1 billion in capital returns to shareholders via a mix of dividends and REIT units totalling N2.47 per share or a 28.3 per cent return at current market values.
Over the last 12 months, we faced a recession, civil unrest, and significant changes to the way we work due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In spite of these headwinds, we executed our key priorities, implemented initiatives relating to UACN Property Development Company Plc (UPDC), strengthened management, and returned the group to profitability.”
Aiyesimoju explained that as part of the partial exit from UPDC, UAC received N6.6 billion net cash proceeds and 649 million UPDC REIT units valued at N3.6 billion.
“ I am excited that we are unlocking value for our shareholders via a special dividend,as well as, the unbundling of UPDC REIT units which, if approved by regulators, shareholders and sanctioned by the court, will see UAC’s shareholders become direct holders of units in UPDC REIT. Going forward, our focus remains on creating shareholder value and we continue to prioritise growth, scale, and simplicity to achieve this.We will explore acquisitions as an avenue to accelerate growth,” he said.
According to him, apart from its partial exit from UPDC, UAC also divested eight stake in MDS Logistics Limited to our joint venture partner, Imperial Logistics. This, he said, reduced UAC’s ownership from 51 per cent to 43 per cent. MDS Logistics is now classified as an investment in associate.
He added that Chemical and Allied Products Plc and Portland Paints and Products Nigeria Plc announced plans to merge.