The Nigerian Breweries Plc, the pioneer and largest brewing company in the country that serves the Nigerian market and exports to other parts of West Africa, has attributed her 41 per cent drop posted in profit after tax for the financial year ending last December, to increased excise duty rates.
Company Secretary/ Legal Director , Uaboi Agbebaku, said in a statement in Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital, that increased excise duty that came into effect during the year under review adversely affected their audited result.
According to him, ‘’the 2018 results were adversely impacted by the increased excise duty rates that came into effect during the year and a challenging operating environment.’’
Nigerian Breweries was incorporated in 1946 and the first bottle of its brand, the STAR Lager, rolled off the bottling lines of its Lagos brewery in June 1949. As the company expanded into other regions, it established more breweries such as Aba Brewery in 1957 and Kaduna Brewery in 1963.
By 1971, the company was one of the largest industries within the country in terms of capital investment. In 1982, another brewery was added in Ibadan. In September 1993, the company acquired its fifth brewery in Enugu, and in October 2003, its sixth brewery, sited at Ameke in Enugu. Ama Brewery began brewing on March 22, 2003 and at three million hectolitres is the largest brewery in Nigeria.[
Agbebaku however, said that the company during the period under review posted profit after tax of N19.4 billion against N31.6 billion achieved in the corresponding period, a decrease of 41 per cent, pointing out that the revenue also dipped by six per cent to N324.4 billion from the N344.5 billion recorded in 2017.
Continuing, he said that the company recommended a total dividend of N19.4 billion, translating to N2.43 per share to be approved by shareholders at the Annual General Meeting slated for May 17, adding, ‘’the company had earlier, in 2018, paid an interim dividend of N4.8 billion which translated to 60k per share; thus, the final dividend will be N14.6 billion, that is, N1.83k per share.
‘’If the proposed final dividend is approved, this will become payable on May 20 to all shareholders whose names appear on the company’s register of members, at the close of business on March 6, 2019.’’