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ZENITH BANK Puts Smiles on Shareholders Faces with Whopping N57.6b as Dividends

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The shareholders of Nigeria’s largest growing bank, Zenith Bank Plc had wide smiles on their faces when the bank held its annual general meetings (AGMs)Wednesday with the board’s approval to pay a whopping N57 billion to them as dividends.

The N57.6 billion approved by the shareholders of Zenith Bank would go a long way in releasing cash to millions of shareholders at a time most Nigerians are broke and reeling from the cash squeeze in the economy.

The bank recorded a profit before tax of N125.61 billion for the year, compared to N119.7 billion in 2014. Profit after tax also rose from N103.275 billion to N105.66 billion.

From its PAT, Zenith Bank directors recommended a total dividend of N57.6 billion, which translated to N1.80 per share, up from N1.75 paid the previous year.

Shareholders of the bank, at the AGM in Lagos wednesday, unanimously approved the dividend and commended the bank for the improved performance despite the challenging operating environment.

The National Coordinator, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Mr. Sunny Nwosu, said the bank had done well in 2015 by paying its shareholders dividends.

He encouraged the management to maintain its good corporate governance principles, which he said impacted on the bank’s profitability.

Similarly, Chief Timothy Adesiyan of Nigeria Shareholders Solidarity Association (NSSA) hailed the efforts of the board and management of the bank at recording growth in the year under review.

Another shareholder and National President, the Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria, Okezie Boniface, urged the management of the bank to implement better strategies that would sustain the impressive performance going forward.

“The concern of shareholders is to get returns on their investment and Zenith Bank met our expectations even in a better way. The returns we get from Zenith Bank are the best in the industry,” he declared.

In his address, Chairman of Zenith Bank, Mr. Jim Ovia, said: “The bank remains committed to delivering superior returns to our shareholders as we declared an interim dividend of 25 kobo per share and a final dividend of N1.55, bringing the total dividend for the period to N1.80 as against N1.75 per share paid the previous year.”

He noted that owing to a number of domestic and external factors, 2015 was a very challenging year for operators in the banking industry.

He noted, however, that the total deposits was N2.33 trillion for the year ending December 31, 2015, representing an increase of three per cent over the previous year’s figure of N2.27 trillion.

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