United Bank for Africa (UBA) on Friday approved payment of final dividend of N19.9 billion for the financial year ended Dec. 31, 2016.
Shareholders of the bank gave the approval at the 55th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Lagos.
The dividend translates to a final dividend of 55k per share, against 40k per share paid in 2015.
This is in addition to the 20k interim dividend earlier paid by the bank, bringing the total dividend to 75k, against 60k declared in 2015.
Mr Shola Aboderin, the immediate past Chairman, Ibadan Zone Shareholders Association, commended the bank for the dividend declared in spite of challenging operating environment.
Aboderin said that the bank’s earnings, profit before tax and capital adequacy ratio were impressive, despite economic headwinds.
He lauded the bank for financing many projects during the period under review, noting that it had added value to Nigeria and Africa as a whole.
Aboderin urged the bank’s new Managing Director to surpass the achievements recorded by the immediate past Managing Director, Mr Philip Oduoza.
Mrs Bisi Bakare, the President, Pragmatic Shareholders Association of Nigeria, said shareholders were happy with the 75k dividend declared in 2016 and urged the bank to do more in the current financial year.
Bakare said that the bank should continue to embrace cost efficient mechanism to minimise cost.
Dr Farouk Umar, the President, Association for the Advancement of the Rights of Nigerian Shareholders, commended the board and management for good performance and ability to sustain dividend policy.
Umar said the board had tried to sustain the bank’s mission of creating superior value for the stakeholders, abiding by ethical standard and building an enduring institution.
The shareholder activist said that the bank’s share price was under valued, and urged the board to ensure proper value of the share price on the nation’s bourse.
Mr Tony Elumelu, the bank’s Chairman, said its performance in capital adequacy and risk management illustrated the board’s commitment to the best governance principles.
Elumelu said that the bank would focus on customer needs by delivering customer excellence to create sustainable shareholder value.
He added that the bank would remain committed to enhance dividend to all stakeholders.
Mr Kennedy Uzoka, the bank’s Group Managing Director, attributed the company’s growth to culture of innovation in service and product offerings, investment in most relevant new technologies and continuous investment in human capital.
Uzoka said UBA was no longer a Nigerian bank but a Pan-African bank, the only bank that operates in USA.
He said that the bank was a fully diversified portfolio that investors should embrace all the time.
Uzoka stated that 2016 was a challenging year due to macro economic challenges caused by foreign exchange challenge, fall in oil price and Nigerian Delta unrest.
The bank posted gross earnings of N383. 65 billion during the year under review against N314.84 achieved in the previous year, an increase of 22 per cent.
Profit before tax stood at N90.64 billion in contrast with N68.45 billion in 2015, representing a growth of 32.4 per cent.
Its profit for the year increased by 21.1 per cent to N72.26 billion from, N59.65 billion in the comparative period of 2015.