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ROUNDUP: Dangote Refinery commissioned as Patricia suffers security breach

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  • Hello and welcome to TheTimes’ Corporate News Roundup for the week that ended May 27, 2023. 
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  • Let’s now get to the news recap.

The Dangote Refinery is here

The Dangote Group finally commissioned its multi-billion-dollar refinery project last week during a ceremony attended by top government officials and business executives. Speaking during the occasion, Alhaji Aliko Dangote said the first batch of fuel products from the Dangote Refinery would be ready by July 2023. 

The refinery aims to meet domestic and global demands, with 40% of its output specifically targeting exports. In the meantime, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited has pledged its support for the refinery operations. 

Eyowo Microfinance loses licence

Nigerian digital bank, Eyowo, announced that its customers would temporarily be unable to send or receive money from their accounts due to the revocation of its Microfinance operating license by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The bank stated that it is actively working with the CBN to resolve the issue, and the halt on transactions was expected to last between 24 to 72 hours. 

The CBN revoked Eyowo’s license along with over 100 other microfinance banks, citing reasons such as inactivity, insolvency, failure to render returns, closure, or cessation of the licensed banking business for over six months. Eyowo emphasized its commitment to ensuring the security of customers’ funds and apologized for any inconvenience caused during this period of transaction suspension.

Patricia’s security breach

Patricia, a major crypto marketplace in Nigeria, was hit by a significant security breach, leading to a loss of $2 million and the temporary suspension of user withdrawals. In a statement seen by TheTimes, the company explained that it was taking urgent measures to strengthen its security framework. One of the measures included conducting a thorough audit and working with law enforcement. It also said that customers would be able to resume withdrawals once the review is completed. 

The security breach raises concerns about Patricia’s financial stability, particularly regarding its Bitcoin and naira assets. In the meantime, the company is focused on restoring normal operations, regaining customer trust, and explaining the situation through a press release. 

MTN Nigeria gains subscribers

MTN Nigeria gained 4,765 new customers who ported from Airtel, Glo, and 9mobile in Q1 2023. The increase in MTN’s porting gains could be linked to the launch of 5G services, which provide faster internet speed compared to 4G. While Airtel has also obtained a 5G license this year, MTN is currently the only mobile network operator offering 5G in Nigeria.

Note that during the period, other operators also experienced some inward porting. However, the number of subscribers they gained was outweighed by the number they lost. 

MoMo PSB’s financial inclusion plans

MTN’s MoMo PSB said it plans to invest in financial education, mobile financing, and other financial solutions to address the financial inclusion gap in the country. The CEO of MoMo PSB, Eli Hini, highlighted the importance of financial literacy in promoting financial inclusion and stated that the company will focus on educating Nigerians about basic financial solutions. 

Eli emphasized that MoMo’s extensive reach across Nigeria will enable them to serve customers in remote areas who lack access to traditional financial institutions. The company aims to bridge the gap in financial services by extending its solutions to all Nigerians. 

Seplat Energy extends SSPA with Mobil

Seplat Energy Plc announced an extension of its Share Sale and Purchase Agreement (SSPA) with Mobil to acquire ExxonMobil’s share capital of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited. A statement seen by TheTimes explained that the extension became necessary to preserve the transaction while awaiting the resolution of legal proceedings and regulatory approvals. 

Recall that in February 2022, Seplat Energy initially announced the acquisition of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited for a purchase price of $1.283 million plus up to $300 million contingent consideration. The transaction includes the acquisition of ExxonMobil’s offshore shallow water business in Nigeria, including ownership in oil mining leases, infrastructure, and export facilities. 

Rak Unity is getting ready for liquidation

Rak Unity Petroleum Company Plc has started distributing final payments to shareholders after receiving approval for its liquidation at the Annual General Meeting. Shareholders are urged to claim their payments before May 30, 2023, or the funds will be transferred to the Companies Liquidation Account. 

Note that the company’s principal activity was the sale and distribution of petroleum products before its liquidation. The company had already sold its physical assets to Asharami Synergy Limited for a total cost of N59,541,562.

FCMB lists bond on FMDQ

FCMB Group listed its N20.69 billion Series 1 Fixed Rate Resettable NC5.25 Additional Tier 1 Subordinated Bond on the FMDQ Securities Exchange. Funds realised from the issuance would be used by FCMB to purchase Intercompany Notes issued by First City Monument Bank for term lending and regulatory capital strengthening.

Following the listing, FCMB Group’s CEO expressed gratitude for the support received from investors, advisers, and regulators. The bond’s lead sponsor, Chapel Hill Denham Advisory Limited, highlighted the favourable terms it offers for banks and capital market participants, thanking all stakeholders for their support in the successful capital raise.

Berger Paint’s dividend payout

Shareholders of Berger Paints of Nigeria Plc approved a dividend payout of N202.88 million, equivalent to 70 kobo per share, at the company’s 63rd Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Lagos. The shareholders also unanimously approved the appointment of Mrs Alaba Fagun as the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer. 

Meanwhile, the company said it aims to improve its performance, expand its services with the establishment of a new subsidiary called Swift Painting, and address challenges in the industry, such as forex scarcity and inflation. Shareholders praised the company’s consistent dividend payments and its growth in revenue and profit.

Nestle Nigeria’s New Chairman

Mr Gbenga Oyebode was appointed as the new Chairman of the Board of Nestlé Nigeria Plc, effective from May 18, 2023. The appointment was announced during the company’s Annual General Meeting, following the retirement of Mr David Ifezulike, the previous Chairman. 

Mr Oyebode is a seasoned legal professional who holds various leadership positions in other organizations. The board expressed confidence in Mr Oyebode’s ability to contribute to the company’s development.


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