Cadbury’s focus on advantaged brand gives way for growth

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Atedo Peterside

Atedo Peterside

Cadbury Nigeria Plc, foremost confectionary company, has declared a gross earnings of N34.1 billion for its 2011 financial year. This was a remarkable achievement when the figure is compared to N29.2 billion it achieved in 2010.

The company, at its 47th annual general meeting in Lagos Wednesday, also declared a profit before tax of N5.08 billion against N1.95 it recorded in 2010.

The chairman of the company, Atedo Peterside attributed the company’s sustained growth and commendable financial performance to strong corporate global vision, superb execution capabilities and the support of investors.

Notwithstanding the impressive results, the directors did not recommend the payment of dividends this year in line with the company’s strategic plan as set out in the 2009 Rights Circular, instead, he said “we have recommended that the profit realized during the year be ploughed to sustain our renewed momentum and higher profitability”

On the company’s investment and renewed momentum, Peterside said in 2011, the company maintained the tempo of significant capital investment in its business which started in 2010. He reported the shareholders that many of the projects have been completed, yielding results which contribute to goals of growth, efficiency, capability and sustainability.

“In response to strong consumer demand and food drinks category growth, we commenced an ambitious program to invest in new capacity and progressively modernize our Bournvita plant in 2010 to ensure that our manufacturing capability could operate at optimum efficiency”

The chairman further told the shareholders that last year, the company’s packing line – a significant phase of its continuous plant and facilities upgrade was completed enabling the company to re-launch the new enriched Cadbury Bournvita in a world-class polypropylene jar with a number of contemporary presentation and re-sealability benefits.

In 2011, the company stepped up its efforts in employee engagement as part of its determined effort to affirm that Cadbury Nigeria is an exciting place to work, the chairman said adding that the company’s management and staff have been fully involved in this energizing process which has brought renewed momentum to the company’s sites.

On gaining share in mind and market, he said that the strategic decision to focus on the company’s advantaged brands and to significantly increase marketing spending supporting them continues to pay off handsomely. He also said the company reclaimed market share in all the market environment “Consumer demand for our brands has remained strong in the face of increasing competition, particularly Bournvita and Tom Tom, both of which extended their leading positions in their respective markets in 2011”

He explained that the company’s 2011, financial statements indicate that a significant unclaimed dividend fund due to the company’s shareholders still exists. He therefore called on all the company’s shareholders to complete the e-dividend/e-bonus data update form that is attached to the back of the annual report to provide further data that can help reduce this huge outstanding.

On general business environment, he said a combination of several environmental factors played significantly in putting pressure in overall business revenue and profitability in 2011. Chief among these were the social disruptions due to the elections in the country, the impact of the ongoing banking reforms on credit availability, the still high cost of power supply, and the uncertainties associated with raw material supplies.

In : Business