I am not for naira devaluation, says Dangote
Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, on Tuesday categorically rejected calls in some quarters for the devaluation of Nigerian currency, Naira.
Dangote told shareholders at the annual general meeting of his company, Dangote Cement Plc, in Lagos that he was not an advocate of devaluation. He however assured shareholders that even as bad as it may turn out for the economy, devaluation will not in any way affect the fortunes of the cement group.
“We have good strategy in place, the volatility of the foreign exchange will not affect our operations. I am not an advocate of devaluation of our currency, even if that had happened; it would not have affected your company,” Dangote said.
Dangote assured the shareholders that the company would continue to deploy strategies that would increase profitability in spite of the prevailing harsh operating climate.
He explained that with the measures put in place, the foreign exchange volatility would not affect the operations of the company significantly more so when its other African plants are operating maximally and yielding positive results to cushion the effect of the scarce foreign exchange at home.
Dangote in his statement to the shareholders said Africa is rapidly developing, that the UN estimated that its population would rise from about one billion now to 2.4 billion in 2050 with the urbanized population rising from 400 million, to 1.4 billion, which will be more than four times the current population of the United States.
“To support this growth, countries must invest in infrastructure and housing. The World Bank estimates that Africa needs to invest $337 billion a year on new infrastructure in power, roads, transport, and water and then spend a further $35 billion a year on operations and maintenance. This indicate the size of opportunity for a cement manufacturer operating in Africa”, Dangote said.
Dangote said, the company has achieved significant progress in becoming a truly pan-African manufacture and distributor of cement.
“We began the year with three factories in Nigeria, a small import operation in Ghana and several building sites across Sub-Saharan Africa. As a result of the sizable investments that we have made over the past few years, Dangote Cement ended the year with new lines in Nigeria, factories becoming operations in Senegal and South Africa,” he said.
He also added, “As a result of all these initiatives, I believe our company is well on its way to be a global and respected force in cement production, operating an efficient plant in exiting growth markets that will generate substantial returns for shareholders for many years to come.”
Read also: Sterling Bank eyes better returns in 2016
The Company boss noted that the market opportunities opened to the Cement company became apparent upon the opening of its plants in Senegal, Cameroon, Ethiopia, and Zambia, adding that though the countries already had established cement companies but that Dangote cement became successful immediately.
As at today, Dangote disclosed that the company produces 44 million mtpa in eight countries with 14, 289 staff, and N491.7 billion in sales.
One after another, the shareholders expressed their satisfaction at the management style of the company which has continued to increase its earnings and profitability at a time its competitors and other companies are struggling to stay afloat, due to the inclement operating climate.
The Company announced a profit after tax of N181.3 billion for the financial year ended Dec. 31, 2015 while profit after tax grew by 13.7 per cent. Accordingly, the firm is paying N8 per share as dividend to shareholders.
Highlights of the result showed that revenue is up by 25.6 per cent to 491.7 billion as new plants perform strongly across Africa. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) up by 17.5 per cent to 262.4 billion at 53.4 per cent margin.
This showed that all plants profitable across Africa. Also, earnings per share appreciated by 15.2 per cent to 10.86. Also, dividend went up by 33.3 per cent to 8 per share at 73.7 per cent payout ratio.
Group cement volumes rose by 35 per cent to nearly 19 million tonnes, price reduction drives strong rebound in Nigerian market in the fourth quarter as volumes up 36 per cent and full-year volumes up 3.2 per cent despite severe economic challenges.
It would be recalled that Dangote Cement invested N217 billion on its expansion programme across African countries. The countries are Nigeria, Senegal, Cameroun, Congo, Ghana, Cote d’Iviore, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Zambia.
RipplesNigeria… without borders, without fears
Join the conversation
Support Ripples Nigeria, hold up solutions journalism
Balanced, fearless journalism driven by data comes at huge financial costs.
As a media platform, we hold leadership accountable and will not trade the right to press freedom and free speech for a piece of cake.
If you like what we do, and are ready to uphold solutions journalism, kindly donate to the Ripples Nigeria cause.
Your support would help to ensure that citizens and institutions continue to have free access to credible and reliable information for societal development.
INVESTIGATION: 4 yrs after completion, Kwara PHC facility inactive, rural dwellers in pains
In the middle of the night sometime in September 2019, Fatimah Ballah struggled with severe pains as she tries to...
INVESTIGATION: How Oyo State, contractors spent N1.1bn on water projects, but communities don’t have a drop
Multimillion naira water projects largely initiated by the late Abiola Ajimobi-led state government in Oyo State to benefit over 40...
INVESTIGATION: In Cross River, civil servants retire into poverty as govt looks away, squanders funds on frivolities
Thousands of civil servants in Cross River State struggle to stay alive as they are denied their gratuities and monthly...
Students suffer as contractors abandon Kano school projects after receiving over N70m
In 2019, to improve the condition of public schools in Kano State, the Federal Government disbursed millions of naira to...
SPECIAL REPORT: World Bank road projects go bad in Enugu, as state govt fails to fulfill promise
Counterpart funded road projects between the world Bank and Enugu State government have started to fail, as the state government...