By Peter Egwuatu
ASECTION of shareholders group under the aegis of Nigerian Shareholders Renaissance Association, RESAN, has expressed concern over the recapitalization plans of Lafarge Africa Plc to raise about N140 billion in a Rights Issue and restructure its finances.
The Board of Directors of Lafarge had at its 58th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held on June 7, 2017 requested shareholders approval of the debt restructuring by means of a rights issue, where LafargeHolcim will convert its debt into equity.
A first step of the restructuring has been executed with a refinancing covered by a Hedge on the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange Fixing (NAFEX). The Directors stated that the transaction will have no impact on the company’s Profit and Loss account, adding that the intention was to merge United Cement, Calabar (UNICEM) into Lafarge Africa Plc.
RESAN in a statement signed by its President and Secretary, Ambassador Olufemi Timothy and Mr. Raph Ogedengbe, made available to Vanguard said, “We have reasons to believe that, this Rights Issue if executed without a clause(s) and, or Memorandum of Understanding , MoU, that our company shall not contravene the NSE rule of listing requirement, and that our company shall maintain at least minimum 20 per cent public float as required by law, abide with it, guarantee same, interest, investments of retail, minority shareholders may be at Risk and in Jeopardy.”