The board of Conoil Plc at the weekend assured shareholders that the company has been positioned to continue to grow and deliver better returns despite operating challenges.
The assurance came at the annual general meeting in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State where shareholders approved the payment of N1.4 billion as cash dividend for the 2018 business year. Shareholders will receive a dividend of N2 per share, The Nation reports.
In his address to shareholders at the meeting, Chairman, Conoil Plc, Dr. Mike Adenuga (Jr), stated that Conoil has continued to improve on its performance and shareholder’s value despite the tough operating environment in the downstream oil sector.
Key extracts of the audited report and accounts for the year ended December 31, 2018 showed that profit before tax rose by 11.4 per cent N2.57 billion in 2018 as against N2.30 billion in 2017. Profit after tax grew by 13.8 per cent from N1.58 billion to N1.80 billion. Turnover had risen by 5.8 per cent to N122.21 billion in 2018 as against N115.51 billion in 2017. Earnings per share consequently increased from N2.27 in 2017 to N2.59 in 2018. The company’s net assets per share rose from N25.78 in 2017 to N26.37 in 2018.
Adenuga said Conoil has been able to weather the challenges in the downstream oil sector and the general economy by remaining focused on its strategic growth plans, drawing from its inherent resilience and dynamism as a world-class company and the marketer of choice.
According to him, the company had embarked on strategic cost reduction without hampering the future growth potential of the business while it took pragmatic steps to tackle the turbulent conditions in some of its key markets.
“Every segment of our business will continue to receive the desired attention with a view to maintaining world class levels of operating and capital discipline. We believe that the future holds a lot of promise for our shareholders, the company will surely reward them for their steadfastness and unwavering faith in its prospects,” Adenuga said.
He assured that the company would not relent in its efforts to maintain its leading position in the downstream petroleum sector by continuously developing its product portfolio, improving service delivery and best practices while delivering value to all stakeholders.
He said Conoil would leverage on its proven pedigree and cutting-edge advantage in technical expertise and service delivery to take maximum advantage of any emerging growth opportunities in the economy, noting that the company has significantly invested in new facilities and level of support behind its brands.
“In the face of uncertainties, what counts is being trusted to deliver, we are committed to delivering excellent returns and building value for our customers, our employees and of course, our distinguished shareholders,” Adenuga said.
Shareholders who spoke at the meeting praised the performance of the company and lauded the board and management for sustaining growth and profitability. Shareholders particularly noted the company’s unbroken dividend payment records.
Founder, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Sir Sunny Nwosu said the continuing profitability and dividend payment by Conoil has set it apart as a resilient and leading company in the downstream oil sector.
“I must commend the board and management of Conoil for sustaining profitability and also able to pay dividend to its shareholders notwithstanding the very tough operating environment during the financial year in review. I know of some companies in the downstream oil sector that could not pay dividend to shareholders,” Nwosu said.
Another shareholder, Barrister Ganiat Shiyanbola praised the company for its hard work as shown in its impressive performance.