By Peter Egwuatu
SHAREHOLDERS of Conoil Plc have asked its Board of Directors to search for indigenous Managing Director/CEO that would lead the company to achieve greater height, even as the Board assured them of improved performance in the coming years.
The shareholders at the 39th Annual General Meeting(AGM) held in Ibadan at the weekend were not happy with the absence of the Managing Director/CEO, Mr. Sanjay Mathur at the meting, as well as the Chairman, Dr. Mike Adenuga, saying, â€œ It is time for the Board to search for a competent indigenous Managing Director that would serve the company better.
The Indian man cannot lead this company to anywhere as we can see from our performance for the year under review. The dividend that is declared is lower than what was declared the previous year. Also, we need bonus shares next year to compensate us.â€
Meanwhile, the Board has reiterated its capability to achieve set goals as well as its commitment to delivering increasing returns on investment.
Chairman of the company, Dr. Mike Adenuga (Jr.) who was represented by Mr. Ike Oraekwuotu, in his statement at the companyâ€™s 39th AGM disclosed that the company has fashioned out strategic rolling plans and initiatives aimed at further enhancing its operations and sustaining its enviable record of profitability and shareholder value.
â€œYou can rest assure that your company is equipped and strategically positioned to meet its long term goals. Our strategy in an unpredictable economic environment is to maintain our growth momentum and deliver competitive levels of profitability,â€ Adenuga said.
For the financial period ended December 31, 2008, the company paid a dividend of 100 kobo on every 50 kobo ordinary share. It recorded appreciable growth in turnover, posting N124,322,434, which represents 43 per cent increase over the N86,847,548 recorded in the previous year. The gross profit stood at N3.28 billion against N3.76 billion recorded last year, while the net current assets dropped by 9 per cent, from N6.14 billion to N5.59 billion.
Giving insights into the future of the downstream business, Adenuga said the company has stepped up investments in the core segments of the downstream business, including Retail, Lubricants, Aviation, Specialised Products and non-retail business, with a view to strengthening its competitive edge and breaking new grounds to boost its market share.
Already, the companyâ€™s huge investment in storage facilities and modern infrastructures are yielding positive results, as its volume of business has doubled with prospects of further increase in the coming months.
â€œWe are giving special attention to all core elements of our business to enable us achieve our lofty objectives. We are committed to drive our business to greater success by using essential values such as professionalism, transparency, teamwork and customer focus.â€
Sir Sunny Nwosu, National Coordinator, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria(ISAN), said, â€œ What is Conoil and other marketers doing when Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is regulating and also operating as marketer.
It is time for our company to prepare for the deregulation coming up next year. We should conserve our earnings since banks are no longer lending. Also, we advised that the accounting year of our company be changed because there will be much work for the auditors who will be auditing the accounts of banks that now have uniform accounting year. We may not be able to compete with the banks in terms of their remuneration.