The Okitipupa Oil Palm Plc has resolved to pay its shareholders 25k dividends for the year ended December 31, 2020, 27 years after it last paid.
Chairman of the Board of Directors, Chief Mobolaji Osomo, made the disclosure at the 31st Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the company held on Tuesday in Lagos.
Osomo said the company had returned to a significant profitability and had wiped out consistent losses of past years, hence the dividend payout for every 50 kobo shares held.
The chairman also said that the company recorded a significant 94.97 per cent revenue growth for the year ended, Dec. 31, 2020, compared to the same period of 2019.
“Your company emerging from a period of recurring crises for over a decade, returned to a major turnaround with an unprecedented turnover of N548.2 million in 2020 compared to N281. 1 million in 2019, a significant 94.97 per cent increase in revenue.
“In the same period, your company made a commendable profit after tax and dividend payment in the sum of N229.8 million in 2020 against a profit of N3.6 million in 2019.
“However, this is attributable to a change in our business strategy driven by a new agricultural operations model undertaken to re-position the company which is being consolidated in 2021 and we are sure, will produce even far significant results.
“In order to sustain these encouraging trends, strategies have been developed to completely rescue the company’s plantations from the claws of unauthorised persons, who have been exploiting them without let or hindrance for over two decades,” she said.
Osomo also said that the company intends to increase its share capital from N50 million to N1 billion shares of 50k each after approval at the meeting.
She explained that after the share capital increase, the capital obtained would be injected into projects which included, complete rehabilitation of existing 9000 hectares of brownfield; development of over 5,800 hectares of greenfield; developing refining capacities among others.
Osomo added that despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the company was able to commence the turnaround maintanance of its 4.5 tonnes per hour oil milling facility at Ipoke, which would be completed in six months.
Also, Mr Taiwo Adewole, Chief Executive Officer of the company, said that although some government policies supported the company’s growth trajectory, the board and management took strategic steps to reposition the company.
Adewole said that the state government under Gov. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu provided adequate security support that helped the company repossess its plantations.
He explained that the management also put in place an innovative operational model, which was to licence out the plantations which reduced the company’s expenditure.
Sir Sunny Nwosu, National Coordinator, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), who spoke on behalf of the shareholders, said that a lot of years had been wasted.
Nwosu said the 25kobo dividend declared was not much, but expressed the shareholders happiness with the current profit turnaround of the company.
He said that the shareholders had high hopes on the company and were elated that it was on the part of profitability.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the annual reports of the company from year 2008 to 2019 were also presented at the AGM.