Oando shareholders endorse company’s divestment in downstream business


oando-group_nigeria-vol1_mainShareholders of Oando Nigeria Plc on Monday endorsed the divestment of the company’s shareholding and investment in the downstream sub-sector of the oil industry.

The shareholders gave the approval at the company’s 37th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Lagos.

In a unanimous agreement, the shareholders authorised the company’s board to reorganise or divest any of its equities and investments in the sub-sector.

Addressing the shareholders earlier, Group Managing Director of the company, Mr Wale Tinubu, said that the company had concluded plans to divest 49 per cent of its holdings in the downstream sector.

Tinubu added that the company was ready to embark on further divestment if it received better offers.

He said that the company was ready to take up any divestment opportunity that would enhance its operational profile and increase its profitability.

“We are ready to divest 49 per cent of our holdings but should we receive good offer, we do away with the rest of the business.

“We have the capacity to finish any capital project which others may not do and it takes discipline to start a business and complete the business.

“When we see opportunity to divest, we would take them serious,” he said.

Tinubu said that the recent acquisition of Conoco Philips had made the company the largest indigenous oil producer in the global market.

“With an eye to the future, we took on our largest and most daring feat with the acquisition of ConocoPhillips Nigeria, adding capacity to support our future growth plans.

“Our strategic re-focus on the higher margin promises to create profitable growth for us and immense value added for our stakeholders in the near term.

“We have succeeded in repositioning ourselves within the sector, and through future acquisitions and innovative efficacy, we will seek to up our market share in sub-Sahara’s upstream sector within the next five years to 100,000 barrels per day.

“We remain committed to strengthening our balance sheet and expect 2014 to be another strong year for the company,” he said.

Tinubu disclosed that the company was rated number 60 in the global market.

On gas and power venture, he said that the business had recorded improved performance in the last one year, contributing about N5.8 billion profit to the company’s overall revenue.

He, however, lamented the parlous state of infrastructure in the country, saying that the company was facing a major challenge of lifting gas from Niger Delta to other regions of the country.

On unclaimed dividends, the managing director said that the money would be re-invested in liquid money market to make it easier for the owners to claim their funds.

The  shareholders also approved N2.4 billion to be paid as dividend by the company for the financial year which ended on Dec. 31, 2013.