Shareholders approve Presco’s N1 billion total dividend
• Applaud firm’s expansion exercise
For increasing shareholders value on investment through dividend payout and efforts to diversify its revenue base, shareholders’ of Presco Plc have commended the company’s board on its 2015 performance, even as they approve a dividend of N1 billion, translating to 100 kobo per share.
Reviewing the company’s performance during the company’s 23rd yearly general meeting in Benin, Edo State recently, the Chairman of Presco Plc, Pierre Vandebeeck assured shareholders that the company was already reaping the dividend of its expansion exercise of the previous years.
He explained that the company recorded a turnover of N10.448billion as against N9.138billion, resulting in Profit AfterTax (PAT) of N2.231billion.
“The performance of the year 2015 is very good. We achieved a total of fresh fruit bunches (ffb) production of 176,477 tons as against 162,076 tons in the previous years, crude palm oil produced was 39,328 tons compared with 27,586 tons of the year 2014 and refined, bleached, deodorized oil of 29.159 tons compared with 25,279 tons of the year 2014.”
According to him, the company has concluded arrangement to expand investment in oil production and diversify into rubber plantation.
To this effect, he added that plans are on top gear to commence the development of the new 14,000 hectare project site for oil palm and rubber plantation this year.
“2016 will see further expansions in our oil palm plantation hectarage additional investments in processing facilities and support infrastructure and commencement of development in the 14,000 hectare new project site in Orhionmwon local government area for oil palm and rubber plantation.
Vandebeeck pointed out that increased resources would be invested in the firm’s research and development programmes and towards the completion of the RSPO certification.
“We are committed to research and development; it is at the forefront of new planting material development. The amount that was spent on research and development in 2015 was N94.2 million,” he added.
He, however bemoaned the harsh operating environment, especially, the unavailability of foreign exchange for procurement during the period under review.
“Worsening unavailability of Foreign Exchange (FOREX) for procurement of capex goods and essential inputs, policy inconsistencies, funding problems including rise in bank lending rates and security concerns in various parts of country”.
“The Naira depreciated by about 30 per cent during the year and inflation rate rose to 9 per cent at the end of 2015 compared to 8 per cent at the end of 2014. Nevertheless, the resilience and robustness of the Nigerian economy makes it remain a destination of choice”.
He assure shareholders that the company would continue to meet up with regulatory requirement, adding that the 2015 report retains additional section of the corporate governance to enhance disclosure and transparency.