Cement-maker Lafarge Africa posted its heftiest profit since at least 2011 as top-line improved by as much as 27.1 per cent, and the real estate industry of Africa’s largest economy returned to bloom after a second recession in five years hampered consumer spending.
Revenue for last year rose to N293.1 billion from N230.6 billion a year before, according to Lafarge Africa’s audited financials issued on Tuesday and seen by PREMIUM TIMES.
But that still lags behind the figure reported four years back in 2017, when the company generated sales worth N299.2 billion, thanks to a cement market boom just after a recession.
Profit before minimum tax advanced to N62.3 billion at a pace of 65.7 per cent. The jump owed its debts some cost control measures notably paring finance costs (the cash spent by the company in servicing long-term credit facilities) down from N9.7 billion to N5.3 billion and maintaining a measured growth in other components of operational expenditure.
After-tax profit rose to N51 billion equivalent to a 65.4 per cent surge over what was recorded for 2020.
“Our 2021 performance showed significant improvement, with net sales of +27.1 per cent, recurring EBIT of +42.6 per cent and net income of +65.4 per cent, compared to FY 2020 results,” said Lafarge Africa’s chief Khaled El Dokani.
“We are equally pleased with the progress we are making on sustainability; our use of affordable clean energy and agro-ecology footprint are in accordance with our net zero pledge journey.”
KPMG Professional Services, which audited the company’s books, noted as a key audit matter an impairment loss of N4.7 billion arising from the situation created by Lafarge Africa’s Sagamu plant running below installed capacity.
It cited the sub-optimal plant efficiency of the facility as the grounds, also noting that “a write down of the associated specific spares carried as inventories of ₦724 million have been recognised in the consolidated and separate financial statements.”
Holcim Limited, the world’s biggest cement manufacturer headquartered in Zug, Switzerland, holds 83.8 per cent of Lafarge Africa’s shareholding through subsidiaries AIC UK and CariCement BV.