Shareholders of Zenith Bank have lauded Jim Ovia, its outgoing chief executive, who midwifed it from inception 20 years ago to today’s enviable height, and is scheduled to leave office at the end of June this year.
The gathering also approved the bank’s proposal to distribute N11.3 billion as dividend, translating to 45 kobo per share for the 15-month to December 31, 2009, from earnings per share 82 kobo, which they considered impressive. This is particularly so, according to them, at a time some of its peers are offering as little as 10 kobo per share. The bank, they noted, has also offered a bonus of one-for-four for the same period.
Gross earnings income for the period rose by N65.661 billion or 31.025 per cent to N277.3 billion from N211.639 billion in the previous full year, out which interest and similar income stood at N193.545 billion, compared with N138.737 billion previously, while net interest expenses grew to N83.957 billion, up from N53.294 billion. This brought net interest income to N109.588 billion, as against the previous N85.443 billion, just as there was “other income” of about N78.65 billion, up from N68.799 billion.
Profit before tax was however depressed N35.085 billion, representing a decline of about N21.027 billion or 37.47 per cent, while profit attributable to shareholders stood at N20.603 billion, from the previous N51.993 billion. This translates to earnings per share of 82 kobo
Ovia, used the occasion to restate his faith in the ability of Godwin Emefiele, his successor and pioneer staff of the bank and his deputy for the past nine years to guide, the Zenith Group to even greater heights.
“Godwin is a seasoned banker of high integrity with a clear strategic focus and enduring commitment to Zenith Bank,” he assured the meeting in what is his last annual CEO Letter to shareholders, while expressing confidence that the in-coming chief executive “will offer excellent leadership and guide the Group successfully to greater heights.”
“I am confident that under the leadership of Godwin Emefiele, the bank will continue to draw upon its superior people, excellent service culture and continuous deployment of state of the art technology to elevate the Group to greater heights,” he added
The meeting also noted the fact that the bank could offer much more at the end of current year, judging from the equally remarkable first quarter result, indicating a N55.03 billion gross earnings. The result also showed a 12 per cent increase in profit before tax from N11.8bn in March 2009 to 13.2 billion in March 2010, and N9.509 billion net profit.
Reacting to the un-audited first quarter result submitted to the NSE on Monday, market watchers noted that it is a good start for the group and an opportunity to sustain investor confidence.
A breakdown of the first quarter result showed 9 per cent growth in total asset to N1.8 trillion, over the December 2009 level, while capital adequacy stood at 28 per cent (while the bank had 34 per cent), representing almost three times more than the 10 per cent regulatory minimum requirement. Liquidity ratio for the period stood at 48 per cent (while the bank had 59 per cent), almost two times the 25 per cent minimum required by regulation.
Analysts believe that Zenith’s balance sheet is strong enough to propel its planned expansionary activities and also to withstand any adverse event.
NCC, Digital Encode Support NITRA Innovative Tech Forum On Post-COVID-19 Strategies
The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Nigeria’s telecommunications regulator and Digital Encode, Cybersecurity and Compliance advisory company, have indicated interest to partner with the Nigeria Information Technology Reporters Association (NITRA), the national umbrella body of ICT reporters, as it organizes a forum that will x-ray the industry’s future plans for ICT growth post pandemic era.
The event, slated to hold on October 15, 2020, will seek to discuss the needs for a fortified ICT sector after the COVID-19 era, and the level of preparedness of ICT stakeholders to embrace the challenge of being pivotal to the stability and growth of all other sectors.
A statement from NITRA National Secretariat in Lagos indicates that due to the pandemic and need to observe the COVID-19 protocol on social distancing, the event will be held via a Webinar.
This year’s theme, “Multi-stakeholder Approach To National Recovery Post-Pandemic”, is in line with the annual event’s generic theme, ‘NITRA Innovative Tech Forum’, a contribution by NITRA to the development of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) innovations and policies in Nigeria.
Prof. Umar Danbatta, executive vice chairman, NCC is expected to deliver the keynote speech at the event and will throw more light on Federal Government’s plans, programmes and policies on post-pandemic strategies using ICT.
Dr. Adewale Obadare and Dr. Seyi Akindeinde, founders of Digital Encode, while accepting to support the event expressed their readiness to offer their expertise in Cybersecurity for organisations to prepare against cyber- attacks with the new normal.
They will also highlight areas that are high risks that need fortification in terms of cybersecurity.
Speaking on the event, Mr. Chike Onwuegbuchi, national chairman, NITRA, noted that as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to leave its negative trails across the globe, economic reboot for countries will not only depend on how well they readapt to the new normal, but also more on their recovery plans.
According to him: “While the federal government has consistently expressed its willingness to set all policies in place to engender growth, and accelerated implementation of these policies, private sector firms have also shown great hunger for the task ahead in post-COVID-19 era.
However, the question that needs to be answered is whether all stakeholders are ready for the required task ahead.”
The event will also offer participating companies opportunities to publicize some of their individual efforts at contributing to reacting a soft landing or lifeline for SMEs and other ancillary companies as the pandemic threatens their survival.
Digital Encode is a multi-award winning and leading consulting and integration firm that specializes in the design, management, and security of business-critical networks, telecommunications environments and other Information Technology (IT) infrastructures.
NCC Threatens Illegal Users of GSM Boosters with Arrest, Prosecution
Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) has warned telecom consumers to desist from using illegal GSM boosters.
The commission also said that anyone caught using a GSM booster without obtaining approval of a duly licensed network operator will face arrest and prosecution.
GSM boosters are devices that transmit and receive telecommunications signals and can therefore interfere with other radio frequency equipment.
Ikechukwu Adinde, director, public affairs, NCC, said in a notice published on NCC website, that only licensed network operators are allowed to use GSM boosters.
The booster, also known as amplifier or repeater is made up of three main elements – exterior antenna, amplifier, and interior antenna.
They form a wireless system to boost cellular reception
“Members of the public should note that, willful interference with any wireless telegraphy is an offence under Section 16 of the Telegraphy Act, 2004,”it said
The agency said it will not condone any flagrant breach of this law.
It has also enforced measures to prosecute offenders.
Accordingly, monitoring mechanisms have been put in place and anyone caught using a GSM booster without obtaining approval of a duly licensed network operator will face arrest and prosecution.
“Any member of the public with useful information regarding the illegal use of GSM Boosters should contact the Commission on 09-4617000/7351 or send an email to [email protected],” the notice said.
“Individuals desirous of using GSM Boosters should note that they can only do so in conjunction with licensed network operators,” it added.
Tizeti Selects Nokia to Provide LTE Fixed Wireless Access Solution for High-Speed internet Services in Nigeria
Tizeti announced that it selected Nokia’s Fastmile Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology to enable usprovide superior internet services to over 1 Million subscribers in Port Harcourt, Edo and Ogun in Nigeria.
Tizeti will deploy Nokia’s AirScale Base Station TDD-LTE and FastmileFixed Wireless Access (FWA) gatewaysto deliver premium internet and Virtual Private Network (VPN) services to Residential, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
The solution will also enable Tizeti’sto deliver a more robust, high-speedinternet service to subscribers and the flexibility to seamlessly evolve to 5G Fixed Wireless Access when needed.
Nokia’s FWA solution enables Tizeti to fast-track broadband access and provide a best-in-class broadband experience to its subscribers.
Nokia’sAirScale Base Stations ensure high-quality connectivity and coverage and enablesTizeti to evolve the network in line with customer demand.
Nokia’sFastmilegateways connect wirelessly to the existing network to createa fastbroadband connection and enhanced Wi-Fi experience in the home.
The Nokia Network Services Platform will help Tizeti to simplify operations and quickly respond to changing market demands.
Kendall Ananyi, Tizeti, said:“We are committed to providing the best-in-class network experience to our subscribers. We are confident that Nokia’s proven technology and expertise will help us differentiate our services based on quality. This a crucial project for us as it introduces LTE in our networks and allows us to bring new and innovative services to our subscribers.”
Eniola Balogun, Nokia, said:“We are thrilled to work with Tizeti on the initiative to upgrade their network to bring the latest products and services to its subscribers. Nokia Fastmile will help Tizeti to cost-effectively enhance the customer experience.
The project will also enable them to delight their subscribers by providing more reliable data services.
On the other hand, Tizeti will benefit by adding new revenue streams.”
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