WAPCO records N2.9bn profit, pays N900m dividend

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March 13, 2006/punch




Investors in West African Portland Cement Plc are to receive a dividend of N900million for the year ended December 31, 2005.

This is coming after over three years without any dividend due poor financial state of the company.

In its audited financial results made available on Friday, WAPCO recorded significant growth in turnover and profitability.

Turnover rose by 21 per cent from N22.096billion in 2004 to N26.62billion, while operating profit grew by 112 per cent from N2.9billion to N6.1billion, just as the company ended the year with a profit after tax of N2.8billion as a against a loss of N3.4billion in 2004.

The Chairman of WAPCO, Chief Bayo Akinnola, said that the impressive performance was made possible by th careful management of debt portfolio, which had resulted in a significant reduction in interest expense allowing operating profit to flow into shareholders’ funds.

He said, “I am very delighted to be able to announced this significant turnaround in the performance of the company. No doubt our shareholders will receive these results with gladness and enthusiasm for the future of the company which now looks brighter than before.

“In keeping with promises contained in the Right Issue circular in 2005, the board of directors has resolved to propose a gross dividend of 30kobo per share.”

“I must thank our shareholders who have kept faith with us while we worked at turning around the company. The board and management appreciate their patience and loyalty.”

Speaking in the same vein, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the company, Mr. George Lourandos, attributed the performance partly to commitment and dedication of the staff.

“Our staff in 2005, were faced with challenging work schedules and the result of their excellence performance is the impressive financial results which we have achieved. And 2006 has started on a rather good note and we are hopeful for a better performance this year,” he said.

Lourandos explained that in 2003, WAPCO inaugurated its flagship dry process plant at Ewekoro to replace the old wet process technology, while it had embarked on the refurbishment of its Sagamu plant.

“The benefits of these investments have begun to be realised and are expected to impact on future performance of the company,” he said.

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