Investors await Vitafoam Nigeria’s dividend as directors meet

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Nigeria’s leading foam manufacturing company, Vitafoam Nigeria Plc, may announce its dividend payout next week. Dividend payment is one of the top agenda at the board meeting of the company scheduled for next week.

Directors are expected undertake final review and approve the company’s audited report and accounts for the year ended September 30, 2019. The board will then simultaneously consider dividend payment.

Most pundits expect Vitafoam Nigeria to declare dividend, sustaining a long-running tradition of consecutive dividend paymentover many decades.

Analysts also almost agreed that dividend payout for the 2019 business year may not be below 25 kobo per share paid for the 2018 business year, despite the 25 per cent increase in outstanding shares due to bonus shares distributed to shareholders in 2018.

Vitafoam Nigeria’s net profit had risen by 121 per cent to N1.14 billion by the third quarter as increased market penetration, diversified product base and improved internal efficiency brought the company to its best performance in recent period.

By the third quarter ended June 30, 2019, Vitafoam Nigeria’s earnings per share stood at 107.66 kobo in 2019 compared with 48.83 kobo recorded in comparable period of 2018. Profit after tax had jumped from N515.2 million in 2018 to N1.14 billion in 2019.

The report showed impressive top-down growth as turnover rose from N16 billion to N18.82 billion. Gross profit increased from N4.75 billion to N5.97 billion. Operating profit rose from N1.67 billion to N2.38 billion.

Profit before tax leapt from N788.4 million in 2018 to N1.66 billion in 2019.

Vitafoam Nigeria had distributed N260.51 million as cash dividend and a scrip dividend of one share for five shares for the 2018 business year.

This represented a dividend per share of 25 kobo, in addition to bonus share of one new ordinary share of 50 kobo each for every five ordinary shares of 50 kobo each.

Vitafoam Nigeria had started the immediate past business year with significant growths across key performance indicators.

Key extracts of the interim report and accounts for the three-month period ended December 31, 2018 had shown that turnover rose by 26.3 per cent while profits before and after tax doubled by 98.48 per cent and 123.14 per cent respectively.

Group turnover stood at N6.38 billion in December 2018 as against N5.05 billion recorded in comparable period of 2017.

Profit before tax rose from N258.53 million to N513.12 million while profit after tax jumped from N162.17 million to N361.87 million.

Earnings per share also increased from 13 kobo by December 2017 to 33 kobo in December 2018.

Group Managing Director, Vitafoam Nigeria Plc, Mr Taiwo Adeniyi, has said consistent growths in key performance indicators in successive results provide basis for assurance that the company will be able to surpass its previous performance in the current business year.

He noted that the first quarter results for the current business year had shown the direction of the group’s business.

Adeniyi said the group’s Nigerian businesses are on a stronger footing while three of its seven subsidiaries have started to generate profit.

He said the company will continue to innovate and develop products that will keep it ahead of competition and enable it to grow its turnover while extracting better values for shareholders.

Chairman, Vitafoam Nigeria Plc, Dr Bamidele Makanjuola, said the growth in turnover and profitability reflected the robustness and fundamental strength of the group’s business.

According to him, the company had taken strategic decision and reengineered its business with special focus on products quality, innovation, market differentiation, customer service and consumer education.

“These efforts underscored our long-term priorities of growing revenue, controlling operating costs, and driving higher gross margins. I am pleased to report that we made great strides in cost containment and sustained positive trends in gross margins,” Makanjuola said.

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