BY NKIRUKA NNOROM
As part of efforts to encourage more quoted companies to imbibe the culture of rewarding their shareholders with dividend payment, United Bank For Africa (UBA Plc), Vitafoam Plc and 84 other quoted companies have been pencilled down to be rewarded for their consistent dividend payment history by Bodmas Foundation.
The affected companies are to receive Bronze, Silver or Gold award at the Maiden Awards Presentation Ceremony of Dividend Payment Awards (DP – Award) scheduled to hold on Friday, December 12, 2014.
The list of the 2014 DP-Awards winners indicates that only UBA Plc and Vitafoam Nigeria Plc are in the Gold Award Category for achieving dividend payments of 41 years and 36 years respectively to their shareholders.
14 companies are in the Silver Award category for achieving dividend payment years of between 20 and 30 years to shareholders. The companies include- Unilever Nigeria Plc (17 years dividend payment history), Flour Mill of Nig. Plc, (23 years), John Holt Nigeria Plc (26 years); Cadbury Nigeria Plc (33 years); Nigeria Breweries (21 years); Cutix Plc (25 years); University Press Plc (25years); Scoa Plc (28 years); FBN Holdings Plc (17 years); GlaxoSmithkline Consumer Plc (22 years), Mobil Oil Plc (21 years), Seven-Up Bottling Co. (18 years), Julius Berger Nig. Plc, (18 years) and Nestle Nig. Plc, (17 years).
Bronze Award winners comprise 70 companies that have achieved dividend payment years of between five years and 15 years to their shareholders as their available published Annual Reports show. The Bronze Award-winning companies include Roads Nigeria Plc, Forte Oil Plc, Fidelity Bank Plc, Continental Reinsurance Plc, Nahco Plc, Cement Company of Northern Nig. (CCNN Plc), GT Bank Plc; Zenith Bank PLC; FCMB Group PLC; Dangote Cement Plc, Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc, and Red Star Express Plc among others.
A statement by Executive Director, Bodmas Foundation, Mr. Abiodun Ayodele, said: ‘’The respective DP-Awards winning companies are by their awards, indicating to their shareholders, investors, regulators, and the public at large that they are premium companies that hold a great prospect for continuous wealth creation for their investors / shareholders, and the Nigerian economy at large.
The listed companies have by their collectively impressive dividend payments to shareholders to date, added hundreds of billions of naira to the Nigerian economy and given a good account of themselves to justify their shareholder investments in the Nigerian capital market.”
He further said that the 2014 edition of DP-Awards presentation ceremony signifies the commencement of the yearly DP-Awards for listed companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, that achieve a minimum cumulative dividend payment of five years to their shareholders at any given time after listing on the Exchange.
Ayodele noted that the 2014 DP-Awards Presentation event would afford Nigerians the opportunity to view the details of dividend payments by the DP-Awards’ winning companies, which the Foundation has compiled and used to select the 2014 winners among the over 200 companies listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange.
According to him, the dividend payment details would enlighten the Nigerian public, particularly the retail investors, to give more attention to the regular collection of their dividends as against their present prevalent lukewarm attitude that has seen the amount of unclaimed dividends rise to a staggering N60 billion.
The event will be chaired by a former Nigerian Defence Minister, Chairman of TY Holdings Limited and May & Baker Plc, Lieutenant Gen. Theophilus Danjuma (rtd), with their Excellencies, Governors Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State and Babatunde Raji Fashola of Lagos State, and the Honourable Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, expected as Chief Guests of Honour.
The chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Bodmas Foundation, Dame Priscilla Kuye, will be the event’s chief host.
The 2014 DP- Awards ceremony will also be graced by Board Members of both the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Nigerian Stock Exchange including other stakeholder groups; company registrars, stockbrokers, auditors, solicitors, shareholder associations, and other professional bodies that render services to the Nigerian capital market.