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Dangote Drags BUA to Anti-Competition Commission for False Allegations

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Sugar - Investors King

Nigeria’s leading sugar manufacturer, Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc on Wednesday announced it has filed a complaint against BUA Food Plc for false allegations that the company intentionally halt sales of sugar to create artificial scarcity and force prices up.

In the widely publicised allegations first published on ThisDay newspaper, and later on several online media, BUA had claimed Dangote and Flour Mills suspended sales of sugar because the Federal Government had declined 2022 raw sugar allocation.

BUA went on to accuse the two companies of working against the Federal Government’s National Sugar Master Plan established to ensure Nigeria attain self-sufficiency.

However, in a press release, Dangote refuted the allegations and accused BUA of playing dirty.

The press release reads “In compliance with the requirements of the Rulebook of the Nigerian Exchange Limited, DSR wishes to strongly refute the allegations and assertions in their entirety as these false allegations may mislead the market and may give an undue competitive edge to BUA.

“We believe this behaviour exhibited by BUA is worrisome and appears to conflict with the anti-competition rules. Last year, just before the commencement of the Ramadan (the Islamic holy month of fasting), BUA made similar false allegations against the Company that it was engaged in ‘price-fixing’ and not honestly pursuing the Backward Integration Project. In response to this, we published a Press Release (published on the Issuers’ Portal on April 14, 2021) to refute the false allegations and made a formal complaint to the Anti-Competition Commission. Another formal complaint was made to the Commission on February 14, 2022 and we await their actions to address the situation.

“In line with our plan, we have continued to supply Sugar to meet the market’s demand and have made the necessary supply chain and logistics investments/arrangements to ensure there are no risks to our ability to meet the current market demands.

“Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc. remains the highest Sugar supplier in the market today, with over 1.44m MT installed capacity at our Apapa Refinery and we are the only company producing sugar from own grown sugarcane under the Nigeria Sugar Master Plan (NSMP) at the Numan operations in Yola, Adamawa State.

“We remain committed to fair play and good governance and would continue to supply Sugar to the market without interruptions.”

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Businessinsider, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Nigerian Breweries Records $99 Million Foreign Exchange Loss, CEO Reveals

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Nigerian Breweries - Investors King

Nigerian Breweries, a subsidiary of Heineken NV, has faced a setback as it disclosed a $99 million foreign exchange loss in its recent financial report.

The revelation was made by Hans Essaadi, the CEO of Nigerian Breweries Plc, during an investor call held in Lagos.

Essaadi attributed the loss to a myriad of economic challenges gripping Nigeria, including the drastic devaluation of the naira and cash scarcity resulting from the nation’s demonetization program.

He explained that the mainstream lager market witnessed a significant decline due to consumers’ inability to afford products like Goldberg after a hard day’s work.

The naira’s depreciation, losing approximately 70% of its value against the dollar since June, has exacerbated inflation to almost 30% in January.

These economic upheavals have placed immense strain on household incomes, especially in a nation where a significant portion of the population lives in extreme poverty.

Despite recording a 9% increase in revenue to 599.6 billion naira, Nigerian Breweries reported a staggering net loss of 106 billion naira for the fiscal year 2023, a stark contrast to the 13.18 billion naira profit from the previous year.

In response to the ongoing challenges, Nigerian Breweries aims to source more raw materials locally to mitigate foreign exchange risks.

The company has also implemented higher product prices effective February 19th to navigate through the turbulent economic landscape.

Despite the bleak financial report, Essaadi affirmed Nigerian Breweries’ commitment to weathering the storm, expressing confidence in the company’s portfolio, processes, and personnel to navigate the challenging market conditions ahead.

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Barclays Plc Shares Surge 6.9% on £10 Billion Shareholder Payout Announcement

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Barclays Africa Group

Shares of Barclays Plc surged by 6.9% following the announcement of a monumental £10 billion shareholder payout.

The British banking giant’s decision to return such a substantial sum to its investors marks a significant milestone in its financial strategy.

The announcement comes in the wake of Barclays’ robust performance, culminating in a return on tangible equity of 9% for the fiscal year 2023.

Demonstrating a forward-looking approach, the company aims to elevate this metric to above 12% by the year 2026, underlining its commitment to sustained growth and profitability.

Chief Executive Officer C.S. Venkatakrishnan expressed Barclays’ dedication to optimizing its operations and enhancing shareholder value.

By implementing rigorous cost-cutting measures, the company plans to reduce costs by £2 billion over the coming years.

The restructuring efforts extend to the reorganization of Barclays into five distinct divisions, each strategically positioned to cater to diverse client needs and optimize service delivery.

The surge in Barclays’ shares reflects investor confidence in the bank’s strategic direction and its ability to deliver on its promises.

The appointment of new leadership roles and the realignment of business divisions underscore Barclays’ proactive stance in adapting to evolving market dynamics and regulatory landscapes.

Barclays’ pledge to streamline operations, bolster returns, and prioritize shareholder interests positions it favorably within the competitive financial landscape.

The £10 billion shareholder payout announcement signals a pivotal moment for Barclays Plc, solidifying its status as a formidable player in the global banking arena and setting the stage for sustained growth and value creation in the years ahead.

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Merger and Acquisition

Capital One Financial Corp. to Acquire Discover Financial Services in $35 Billion Mega Deal

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discovery gold credit card

Capital One Financial Corp. has announced its intention to acquire Discover Financial Services in a $35 billion deal.

This strategic acquisition positions Capital One as the largest credit card company in the United States by loan volume, intensifying competition with Wall Street’s prominent players.

Under the terms of the agreement, Capital One will purchase Discover at a premium, offering 1.0192 of its own shares for each Discover share—a 26.6% premium based on the closing price on February 16th.

Pending regulatory and shareholder approvals from both entities, the deal is anticipated to conclude in late 2024 or early 2025.

The merger between Capital One and Discover represents the most significant global consolidation this year, surpassing notable acquisitions in various sectors.

By combining forces, Capital One and Discover unite two esteemed consumer-finance brands, effectively eclipsing competitors such as JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc. in US credit-card loan volume.

This acquisition not only amplifies Capital One’s market share but also grants the company a formidable position within the payment networks sphere.

Capital One’s CEO, Richard Fairbank, described the merger as a “singular opportunity” to establish a robust presence alongside the largest payment networks, underscoring the transformative potential of the deal.

Upon completion, Capital One shareholders will possess approximately 60% ownership of the consolidated entity, with Discover shareholders owning the remaining stake.

The acquisition is expected to yield significant synergies, generating $2.7 billion in pretax benefits.

The strategic rationale behind the acquisition underscores the increasing importance of scale and technological capabilities in the financial sector.

By leveraging Discover’s extensive network and Capital One’s expertise, the combined entity aims to drive innovation and enhance value for customers in an ever-evolving market landscape.

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