May 20, 2021

Berger Paints’ shareholders okay N116 million dividend

Berger Paints’ shareholders okay N116 million dividend

By Peter Egwuatu

Shareholders of Berger Paints Nigeria Plc have approved the company’s N116 million dividend for financial year 2020, translating to 40 kobo per share and an increase of 60 per cent above 25 kobo paid in 2019.

Besides, company has leveraged technology and innovative products to take advantage of opportunities presented by the current challenging operating environment.

Addressing the shareholders at the company’s 61st Annual General Meeting (AGM) held virtually, the Chairman, Mr Abi Ayida, explained that despite the headwinds such as impacts of COVID-19 pandemic on corporate activities and macroeconomic vagaries, revenue was up by 7.1 percent from N3.58 billion in 2019 to N3.84 billion in 2020.

According to him, the proposed dividend of 40 kobo per share for the year demonstrates the company’s unflinching commitment to the promises to shareholders.

“ Our revenue was driven by volume growth despite the shutdown In economic activities, disruptions and environmental unrest and the loss of sales for about 7 weeks in the year. Free cash flow remained strong at N529 million, representing 34 percent from the preceding year.

“ However, a proposed dividend of 40 kobo per the year demonstrates the company’s unflinching commitment to the promises to shareholders. We are very conversant with the strategic threats being faced by manufacturers in Nigeria but we are equally positioned to take advantage of the opportunities. Ayida said.

In her review of the company’s performance, the National Co-ordinator, Pragmatic Shareholders Association of Nigeria, Mrs Bisi Bakare commended the Board for declaring dividend of 40 kobo per share despite the inclement operating environment.

She noted that the company made comprehensive disclosure in its annual report as it will enable investors to make informed investment decision. Many shareholders also commended the dividend and assured the company of continued relationship.
The Managing Director, Mr Anjan Sircar stated that the company leveraged strategic focus on the sales of premium products and inclusion of new business partners to sustain its operations in the face of dwindling raw materials due to Forex scarcity in the review period. He however assured the shareholders of better days ahead.

“ Whilst we have not fully overcome the impact of the pandemic. We are positive that the worst is behind us and we are positioned to maximize the opportunities for growth, not only in the Nigerian market but other markets facilitated by the African Continental Free Trade Area ( AfCFTA). Our world is increasingly digital, and we see it opening new and exciting opportunities for empowering our people and making business easier. We enter 2021 well positioned to further maximize opportunities technology provide for our business. We remain resilient. “, says Sircar.
Ayida explained that as an indication of corporate foresight, the Board had invested in technology for optimum performance prior to the outbreak of the pandemic.”This proved critical for business continuity as meetings were held seamlessly despite the crises .”, he said.

He eulogized the directors that retired for their sterling contributions to company’s growth and urged the new board members to sustain the trajectory of innovative advice to enhance the company’s global competitiveness.