Despite the economic challenges posed by the difficult operating environment, shareholders of Niger Insurance Plc have commended the company’s commitment to payment of dividend, adding that the policy is one that has sustained investors’ confidence in the company.
According to the firm, during the financial year ended December 31 2015, paid out over N270.8 million as dividend to shareholders amounting to 3.5 kobo per 50 kobo share.
For this reason, they also gave the board the approval to take all necessary steps including initiating and negotiating mergers and acquisition or any other form of business combination or arrangement with any company or institutions whether foreign or local to raise additional capacity through any or all of the following convertible loans, debt, equity, bonds and debentures.
To this effect, Niger having also received the approval of shareholders, will increase its authorised share capital N4.3 billion to N8.05 billion, by the creation of additional 7,500,000,000 ordinary shares of 50 kobo each ranking equally with the existing ordinary shares of the company.
Speaking at the 46th yearly general meeting, in Abuja, the Chairman, Niger Insurance, Hamisu Abubakar, said that the payout was in keeping with the tradition of the company despite the harsh operating environment in the country.
“We have a culture and we are committed to keep this for the benefit of the shareholders,” he said.
He, however, said the company recorded a profit before tax of N704 million in the period under review as against N638.4 million in 2014. For the group, the operating profit before tax stood at N736 million compared to N644.7 million, a growth of 14 percent. The net premium income was N10.5 billion while total assets stood at N20.3 billion.
In the same vein, the company’s total liabilities went down from N14.2 billion to N12.1 billion in the same period.
Speaking further, he said: “The Board has begun discussion with a view to diligently pursue foreign partnership initiative in the coming year. And we are seeking the support of shareholders to consolidate any agreeable arrangement which will be made available in due course.”
He was optimistic that mergers, acquisitions and restructuring in the insurance industry would continue in the years ahead.
“Therefore, mergers, acquisition and restructuring in the industry are anticipated to continue during 2016. Management is determined to turn these developments into market place opportunities for the Company,” Abubakar stated.
He noted that Niger management is determined to turn these developments into market opportunities for the company.
“We look forward with greater confidence and optimism as the company has put in place strategies to be able to convert opportunities as they occur in the years ahead,” he said.
Meanwhile, stakeholders commended the board and management for working hard to keep the company afloat and strong in the mist of economic difficulties.