La­farge Africa PLC to reap gains from forex re­forms

Daily Trust - - BUSINESS -

A ma­jor player in ce­ment man­u­fac­tur­ing on the con­ti­nent, La­farge Africa PLC, has provided up­date on its profit ex­pec­ta­tions for the sec­ond quar­ter of 2016 to the Nige­rian Stock Ex­change re­cently, high­light­ing the im­pact the re­cent Naira value ad­just­ment to ma­jor in­ter­na­tional cur­ren­cies by the Cen­tral Bank (CBN) will have on its fi­nan­cials.

The com­pany’s profit up­date was based on its unau­dited fi­nan­cial state­ments for the pe­riod ended June 30, 2016.

The La­farge Africa PLC Board of Di­rec­tors re­mained op­ti­mistic about the com­pany’s prospects in 2016, not­ing that the im­pact of the Naira ad­just­ment was seen as a one-off event which has durable fu­ture ben­e­fits.

The records showed that La­farge has a to­tal of $495m in ex­ter­nal bor­row­ing on its book which were debts con­tracted by UNICEM, one of its op­er­at­ing com­pa­nies which it ac­quired 100 per cent stakes in 2015.

“With the re­form of the in­ter­bank forex mar­ket boost­ing the se­cu­rity of in­vest­ments and in­ter­est of for­eign fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions in the Nige­rian mar­ket, La­farge Africa PLC is con­fi­dent it can re­fi­nance UNICEM’S $495 loan by the end of 2016, thus mak­ing sig­nif­i­cant savings on in­ter­est pay­ments,” the com­pany said.

Prior to the com­ple­tion of the La­fargeHol­cim merger in 2015, La­farge Africa’s stake in UNICEM was 53 per cent.

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