The African Export-Import Bank, (Afreximbank) has said that it stated partnering with Nigeria’s biggest carrier, Arik air from inception and pledged to continue to strengthen its relationship with the airline.
The bank said it would give the Nigerian carrier support in the areas it can in recognition of the current economic challenges facing the country.
According to the President of the Bank, Benedict Oramah, “We are doing this because of the essential role Arik Air is playing in connecting people across Africa and making sure goods are delivered across the continent. So, we want to make sure they are strengthened to do that. We also understand the difficulties in the environment, not only in Nigeria, but in most African countries.
“So, at this time, as a bank created to deal with or support our clients under such situations. We also wanted to be briefed on how these things are affecting the company and what we can do to make sure they ride through the situation,” Oramah explained after a facility tour of Arik with top officials from the bank.
He reiterated that Arik is a long-standing client of the Bank as they have worked together for several years, building a mutually rewarding partnership.
He disclosed that the bank had supported the airline in acquiring some of their aircraft, adding that Arik Air has lived up to the bank’s expectations.
“So this visitation is essential for us as a bank to see what the airline is doing and to listen to them about their future plans because we are promoting intra African trade with Arik Air as a strategic partner in promoting intra-African trade,” Oramah added.
In response, Chairman, Arik Air, Joseph Arumami-Ikhidi said the bank reviewed the airline’s operation and looked at their operations vis-à-vis the plans.
According to him, “They reviewed everything and we gave them a summary of all that have happened and they too had their facts and figures and acquainted themselves with all our operations such as the difficulties, challenges and other things.
“The bank is set to promote intra-African trade, connect people and goods, which Arik Air has been doing. They also looked at our future plans.”
He confirmed that the bank has been with the airline since inception, adding that Arik Air also has strategic partnership with a lot of institutions such as the American Exim Bank, Export Development, Canada (EDC), Afre-exim Bank and others.
Lafarge Africa Board Proposes N30.60bn Dividend, Lower Than Previous Year
Lafarge Africa’s Board of Directors has recommended a dividend payout of N30.60 billion for the year ended December 2023, a reduction from the previous year’s dividend.
The proposed dividend translates to N1.90 per unit of shares and awaits approval from shareholders at the upcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the company.
In a corporate announcement filed with the Nigerian Exchange Limited, Lafarge Africa disclosed that the proposed dividend is payable from the Pioneer Reserve to shareholders registered as of March 28, 2024.
Despite the lower dividend proposal, Lafarge Africa recorded an increase in revenue to N405 billion, marking an 8.6% rise from the previous year’s N373 billion.
However, the company’s post-tax profit experienced a 4.7% decline, amounting to N51.14 billion, attributed mainly to the devaluation of the naira.
Lolu Alade-Akinyemi, the Chief Executive Officer of Lafarge Africa, expressed confidence in the company’s performance despite economic challenges.
He highlighted the growth in revenue and an improved operating margin, despite pressures from inflation and currency devaluation.
Looking forward, Lafarge Africa remains optimistic about the construction sector’s growth in Nigeria, despite prevailing economic challenges.
The company aims to leverage its market opportunities while maintaining a focus on sustainability and stakeholder value.
South African Billionaire Christo Wiese Predicts Return of Major Players to Nigeria Despite Recent Exodus
South African billionaire Christo Wiese remains optimistic about Nigeria’s economic prospects, predicting the eventual return of major players despite a recent exodus from the West African nation.
In an interview with Bloomberg TV, Wiese explained that it is impossible to ignore Nigeria’s large and growing population, “how do you ignore an economy like this?”
Wiese, the former chairman of Shoprite Holdings Ltd., acknowledges the challenges faced by businesses in Nigeria, where recent currency woes and policy missteps have contributed to an exodus of international companies.
Procter & Gamble Co. and Shoprite are among the global conglomerates that have announced their departure from Africa’s most populous nation.
However, Wiese sees the recent exits as temporary setbacks rather than a long-term trend. He believes that the allure of Nigeria’s vast consumer market and its economic potential will eventually draw major players back.
Despite the current uncertainty, Wiese remains confident in Nigeria’s future, emphasizing the need for governments to adopt correct policies and for investors to exercise patience.
While acknowledging Nigeria’s single-commodity economy vulnerabilities, Wiese highlights the resilience of the nation’s economy and its potential for growth and development.
He suggests that foreign investors, including South African ones, are adopting a wait-and-see approach, anticipating a time when the economy stabilizes and favorable policies are in place.
Seplat Energy Names Udoma Udo Udoma as Independent Non-Executive Chairman, Bello Rabiu as Senior Independent Non-Executive Director
Seplat Energy, a prominent Nigerian energy company listed on the Nigerian Exchange Limited and the London Stock Exchange, has made significant changes to its board leadership.
In a recent announcement, the company revealed that Udoma Udo Udoma has been appointed as the new Independent Non-Executive Chairman, succeeding Basil Omiyi, who is set to retire on March 31, 2024.
Udoma Udo Udoma, a distinguished lawyer and seasoned board administrator, brings a wealth of experience to Seplat Energy.
He holds degrees from St. Catherine’s College, Oxford, and has had a remarkable career spanning various sectors, including petroleum, energy, and natural resources.
Udoma has served on numerous large-sized company boards, including UAC Nigeria Plc and Union Bank Plc, and held key public sector appointments, such as Chairman of the Corporate Affairs Commission and Minister of Budget & National Planning.
In addition to Udoma’s appointment, Seplat Energy announced the selection of Bello Rabiu as the new Senior Independent Non-Executive Director, effective April 1, 2024.
Rabiu, a seasoned professional with extensive experience in the petroleum industry, holds multiple degrees and has served in various capacities at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
The appointments come as part of Seplat Energy’s commitment to upholding strong corporate governance practices and ensuring a smooth transition of leadership.
Both Udoma Udo Udoma and Bello Rabiu are expected to play pivotal roles in guiding Seplat Energy as it continues to expand its operations and consolidate its position as a leading energy company in Nigeria and beyond.
In a statement, Basil Omiyi, the outgoing Chairman of Seplat Energy, expressed confidence in the newly appointed leaders, emphasizing their capabilities to steer the company towards further growth and success.
The appointments underscore Seplat Energy’s dedication to fostering excellence and innovation in the energy sector while meeting the evolving needs of its stakeholders and contributing to Nigeria’s energy transition efforts.
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