United Capital (UCAP) Plc has attributed its winner of the outstanding 2017 PEARL of the capital market award to increased investors’ appetite in the shares of the company on the stock market.
The PEARL Awards Nigeria, an acronym for Performance, Earnings And Returns Leadership is one of Nigeria’s foremost award recognition bodies, focused on rewarding corporate excellence in local institutions and promoting healthy competitiveness amongst quoted companies through growth, diversification and innovation; ultimately leading to improved performance on the Nigerian Stock Exchange.
Speaking while receiving the award, the Chief Executive Officer of the firm, Mrs Oluwatoyin Sanni explained that the firm has continued to deploy all necessary resources towards transforming the African continent through the provision of world-class investment banking services with strong corporate governance practice and increased shareholders returns.
“We believe this appreciation in our share price was attributable to increased interest from shareholders in response to sustained positive performance from the company, having continued to deliver excellent value to shareholders.
“Our shareholders have every reason to be confident in the growth of our business and its overall corporate governance. Knowing that we cannot rest on our laurels, we will continue to deploy all necessary resources towards our purpose of transforming the African continent through the provision of world-class investment banking services.
“We are doing this by building our business for tomorrow, whilst delivering competitive value today. We will also leverage our strong current year performance to become stronger in 2018, as we continue to partner with clients and counter-parties to deliver top-notch products and services to suit their investment and financial objectives,’
The firm, which reported a gross earnings of N3.87 billion and Profit After Tax of N2 billion in its half year performance, also emerged winner in four Main Competitive Award Category in the Sectoral Leadership Award, Financial Services – Other Financial Institutions (Main Competitive Award Category),
-Sectoral Leadership Award, Highest Dividend Yield (Main Competitive Award Category), Good Corporate Governance Award (Special Recognition Award Category) and Outstanding CEO of the Year Award (Honorary Award Category).
The improved performance on the stock price on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) was a testament to the eulogies that engulfed the award. The UCAP share price has seen a number of upward movements in the last few months. On October 31, the firm’s share price that stood at N3.01 rose to N3.38 on November 6, resulting in a 12.3 per cent appreciation in less than a week.
According to Sanni, the firm has remained committed to providing finance solutions for domestic and international investors, with a keen understanding that its business model must evolve to complement our clients’ financial objectives.
While the challenges in the market may have proved disruptive to various aspects of the economy, she noted that it has also opened an avenue for the development of innovative investment banking products/solutions for the company.
“As a testament to our commitment to innovate and lead the development of the capital markets, United Capital Asset Management launched the United Capital Wealth for Women Fund and the United Capital Nigerian Eurobond Fund. These unique solutions were a direct response to the changing investment market domestically and internationally.
She noted that the firm’s Investment Banking division has also executed a number of successful transactions, including acting as the Joint Issuing House for the FSDH N50 Billion Naira Commercial Paper Series 3 and Series 4 and as well as Financial Adviser to United Bank for Africa Plc’s premier Eurobond of US $500 million issued at 7.75 PER CENT, which was 240 times over-subscribed.
“After an impressive 2016, we understood that market expectations would rise considerably but continued to believe that the initiatives being executed across the businesses as well as the existing pipeline of work, would enable us meet those heightened expectations.
“We remain committed to the pursuit of our a clear and consistent strategy across all businesses and will ensure we continue to deliver long term value to shareholders. Whilst the general economic conditions in the main domestic market continue to be challenging, it has also offered an opportunity for innovation. We thank our clients for their continued trust and confidence in us as their investment banking partner and look forward to a stronger second half of the year.
“United Capital will continue to expand its footprint internationally and across Africa, deploying innovative investment banking solutions to governments, companies and individuals,” she added..
The Chairman, PEARL Awards Board of Governors, Umar Abdullahi lauded the company for excellent performance, urging them to remain competitive in the industry and global market.