Shareholders of Ikeja Hotel seek dividend payment
•Applaud new management on restructuring
Shareholders of Ikeja Hotel Plc have berated the old management for non-payment of dividend for five years, urging the new managers to intensify efforts to ensure that value on investment is enhanced through dividend payout.
At the company’s 42nd yearly general meeting, in Lagos, yesterday, the shareholders however applauded the new management on their strategic plans to turn around the fortunes of the Hotel.
They said these efforts are already yielding results, as seen from its 2018 performance, and urged the interim management to ensure that the restructuring translates to better value in form of dividend payout in the current financial year.
Furthermore, they stressed the need for the board to make public the result of the forensic audit when completed to enhance implementation, strengthen corporate governance, and forestall any form of lapses in the future.
Members of the board include Chief Anthony Idigbe; Dr. Alex Thomopolus; Mr. Toke Alex Ibru; Mr. Waheed Olagunju; Mrs. Fadeke Alamutu; Mr. Kunle Aluko; Mr. Ufuoma Ibru; and Alhaji Abatcha Bulama.
Shareholders also unanimously endorsed the re-election of the Executive Director of The Guardian Newspapers Limited, Toke Alex-Ibru as a director of the hotel. Other members of the board also re-elected as directors of the hotel by the shareholders were Abatcha Bulama, and Kunle Aluko. The Publisher of The Guardian, Lady Maiden Alex- Ibru was also present at the meeting.
The Chairman, Idigbe, explained that the group achieved nine per cent growth in revenue with 83 per cent increase in profit for the 2018 financial year.
Specifically, he said the Hotel recorded revenue of N13.3 billion, above the N12.1 billion posted in the corresponding period in 2017, while Profit After Tax (PAT) rose from N603 million to N1.1 billion in 2018.
He expressed optimism that the company is well-positioned to declare interim dividend in the current financial year.
He further disclosed that the new management has also ensured compliance with regulatory requirement to avoid charges resulting from penalties and violations in its operations.
“Unfortunately, the board of directors is unable to recommend the payment of any dividend for the financial year under review. We are however hopeful that we would be able to declare interim dividend during the course of the year 2019.
“High standards of corporate governance are fundamental to the sustainable operation of your company. The board is committed to ensuring that each director continues to make valuable contribution to the growth of the business.
“We have maintained a cordial relationship between the company and the regulators as well as with the operator of its asset, Marriott International, key shareholders and staff and this has enhanced business confidence.”