NIGERIA – Guinness Nigeria Plc has notified the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) that it has scheduled a board of directors meeting to hold on Thursday, September 4, 2014.
THISDAY learnt that the audited financial statements of the company for the year ended 30th June 2014 as well as the declaration of dividend are on the meeting agenda.
The company has been reducing its dividend in the past years due to a decline in profit. For instance, the dividend per share was reduced from N10 in 2011 to N8 in 2012 and further to N7 in 2013.
There are apprehension that the dividend may be reduced for the year ended June 30, 2014 given the company’s nine months performance.
Guinness Nigeria reported decline of 11 per cent per cent decline in revenue and profit for the nine months ended March 31, 2014 even though the company’s management had expressed optimism that its performance will improve in the last quarter of its financial year.
Commenting on the third quarter results Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Guinness Nigeria Plc, Seni Adetu, had said “In spite of the positive contributions from strategic innovations like Orijin Bitters, Snapp and Satzenbrau to net sales, high finance costs in an increasing interest rate environment negatively impacted overall profitability.
We will continue to invest in our brand portfolio and optimization of our market logistics, expecting that these and other initiatives will lead to improved revenues and overall performance.”
In 2011, the leading brewer announced an investment of N52 billion in its business to expand production and route to market infrastructure for its premium and innovation brands.
While the premium brands have remained a strong portfolio of consumer brands holding their own against competition, the innovation brands are exceeding forecasted growth numbers, gaining significant market share as is very visible on the table tops in leading bars in Lagos, Ibadan, Port Harcourt and other cities where these new brands have been launched.
The company confirmed that the sale of its innovation brands like Orijin Bitters, Snapp, Alvaro, Satzenbrau and Orijin Ready to drink were still up for the second consecutive quarter.
Adetu observed that the business is upbeat because the impressive performance of recently introduced innovation brands will be a big boost for Guinness Nigeria’s future performance.
“That the best sales news is from innovation brands is cheering because the investment committed to its development is stimulating growth. This will ensure value creation for our shareholders in no distant future.
The management and board of Guinness Nigeria Plc remain confident in our range of leading brands, our continued focus on distribution and our investment in our brands and people to deliver long term growth for the business.