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BUSINESS ROUNDUP: Unilever Nigeria to sell business; Afromedia accounts frozen after lawsuit; other stories



Companies in Nigerian pay N864.7bn tax to govt in H1, 21

Hello, and welcome to the Business Roundup this week. Here, we bring you highlights of events that happened during the week -from the capital market to the mainstream business activities, while not forgetting the tech/economy build up.

Here are the Headlines:

· Bank of England plays down collapse of Silicon Valley Bank

· Unilever Nigeria puts up business for sale over naira devaluation

· Afromedia accounts frozen, risk losing properties, as firm is slammed with lawsuit

· NNPC set to post over N674bn profit, far behind Saudi Aramco’s $161.1 billion

· Zambia’s central bank approves Access Bank acquisition plan after setback in Kenya


The Bank of England has also stated that the failure of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) in United Kingdom won’t lead to the collapse of the country’s financial system.

UK’s financial regulator made the statement on Friday, just days after the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, assured of the stability of the financial system in Nigeria.

Emefiele, after a Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting on Tuesday, said Nigeria’s financial market has zero exposure to the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank.

Access Holdings Plc, the parent company of Access Bank, has announced that the lender received regulatory approval to acquire African Banking Corporation Zambia Limited (Atlas Mara Zambia).

Read also:BUSINESS ROUNDUP: NNPC sacks Eroton as oilfield operator; Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse crashes stablecoin; other stories

The Nigerian lender has been making series of acquisition across Africa to boost its bottomline and increase access to more liquidity and assets outside the shores of Nigeria.

Part of the acquisitions include African Banking Corporation, also owned by Atlas Mara, in Mozambique. It is also in talks to acquire other African Banking Corporation subsidiary in Botswana.

The Chief Corporate Communications Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, Garba-Deen Mohammad, has said the oil firm expects to surpass its 2021 net profit in the financial period of 2022.

NNPC had reported its profit in 2020 was N287 billion, a year after, the oil corporation saw its bottom line rise to N674 billion.

The state-run organisation has projected that its financials for 2022 will improve on the N674 billion profit recorded in 2021, media reports on Friday disclosed.

Afromedia has been hit with a court order that has affected the release of their Audited Financial Statements for the year ended December 31, 2022.

The stock market-listed company said the court order led to all of Afromedia’s accounts being frozen, preventing it from accessing its funds.

As a result, Afromedia, in a statement to shareholders obtained by Ripples Nigeria on Tuesday, disclosed that the firm will be unable to meet the March 31, 2023, deadline to submit its annual report for last year.

Unilever Nigeria has concluded plans to exit the Home Care and Skin Cleansing market by selling its business segment.

In a statement sent to Ripples Nigeria on Monday, Unilever said it would do away with the Home Care and Skin Cleansing business to focus on other businesses like the food product to reduce exposure to devaluation and currency liquidity.

The development, according to the company, will accelerate its growth and sustain profitability.

On NSE ROUNDUP: Market cap crashes below 1% amidst sell-off in International Breweries, Transcorp

Sell-off in International Breweries, Transcorp, and others pulled down the equity capitalization in the Nigerian capital market by –0.05 percent at the close of trading on Friday.

This means that the market capitalization dipped by N17.18 billion from N29.92 trillion to N29.90 trillion after five hours of trading today.

Similarly, The All-Share Index dropped by 31.55 basis points to close at 54, 892.53, down from 54,924.08 posted by the bourse on Thursday.

Investors traded 137 billion shares worth N3.87 billion in 2,912 deals on Friday.

This surpassed the 117.85 million shares valued at N1.39 billion traded by shareholders in 2,575 deals the previous day.

On the tech scene, Twitter, Accenture, VKAV, TikTok, Canva, Whatsapp, SpaceX, Microsoft, Baidu, Kakao, Duolingo, Cysiv MEA, were some of the names that made the headlines in the tech ecosystem this week.

Professional services giant, Accenture, has announced plans to cut 19,000 jobs or 2.5% of its global workforce.

Also, Microsoft-owned professional networking site, LinkedIn, is launching AI-powered writing recommendations feature to aid profile optimization and recruitment.

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