By NKIRUKA NNOROM
Among the stocks that enjoyedinvestors’ patronage last week to emerge in the top ten performing list were Champion Breweries, May & Baker, Presco Plc, Wema Bank, HIS Plc and DN Meyer plc.
Others include Ikeja Hotel, Julius Berger Nigeria Plc, Costain (WA) plc and Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc.
Champion Breweries listed on the beverages—brewers/distillers sub-sector of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, topped others with price gain of N1.11 or 20.86 percent appreciation from N5.32 to N6.43. Two years ago, Heineken, the parent company of Nigerian Breweries Plc, bought controlling interest in Champion Breweries.
Before the acquisition,it was struggling with problem of inadequate working capital, low productivity, poor market share and low employee morale. Only two weeks ago, the company held a combined annual general meeting, where it announced interest to raise fresh capital to enhance competitiveness and ensure growth and profitability. The company seems to still be going through tough times as it closed 2012 financial year with a loss of N1.3 billion, a fate it suffered in 2011. The turnover for the same period was stable at N1.8 billion.
Year-to-date, the stock price has risen by 105.43 percent from year low of N3.13 to the present market price.
The second top gainer, May& Baker plc rose by 18.10 percent or N0.42 from N2.32 to N2.74. M&B Nigeria Plc manufacturer and distributor of pharmaceutical products, such as vaccines, antibiotics, and sera. The Company also sells diagnostics, medical equipment, bottled water and Mee Mee brand of noodles in Nigeria.
The audited 2012 financial statement showed that both cost and interest on banks’ borrowing are putting so much pressure on the company’s finances. While M&B recorded N5.668 billion as revenue for the year, N3.598 billion was expended as cost of sales, while N469.630 million was used to service debt. Profit for the year therefore dropped to N75.94 million in 2012, as against N222.17 million in 2011.
So far, the stock has risen by 122.76 percent from N1.23 at the beginning of the year to the current market price.
Presco Plc advanced by 10.66 percent or N3.94 to close at N40.89 from N36.95 it started the week at. Presco is among the 32 stocks approved by the Securities and Securities Commission, SEC, for margin trading. By this, the shares of the company qualifies as one of the stocks that could be used as collateral for margin loans.
The first quarter financial statement for period ended 31st March, 2013, showed slight decline in turnover from N2.215 billion in 2012 to N2.006 within the period. Gross profit dropped to N1.053 billion from N1.347 billion in 2012.
Wema Bank’s share prices rose by 9.91 percent or N0.11 from N1.11 to N1.22 at the end of transactions on Friday. Wema bank was one of the banks that failed the CBN’s distress test but was later allowed by the CBN to recapitalize on its own.
Recently, the bank obtained approval from its shareholders to raise N35 billion through special placing in a quest to boost investment in information technology among others. Already, the share price has risen by 144 percent from N0.50 to N1.22. The stock price had previously risen to N1.88 before relapsing to the current market price.
Telecommunication services company, HIS Plc, rose by 9.98 percent or N0.18 from N1.82 to N2.00 per share to close at the fifth top gainers. Year-to-date, the share price has risen by mere 17.65 percent from N1.70 at the beginning of the year, making it one of most unattractive stocks this year. It had risen to N2.59 before dropping to the current market price.
DN Meyer, Ikeja Hotel, JB, Costain and Dangote Sugar advanced by 9.85 percent, 9.76 percent, 9.18 percent, 9.15 percent and 8.67 percent to close at N1.45, N0.90, N66.49, N1.55 and N11.41 in that order.