Business News

Dangote Cement’s unclaimed dividend grows to N4.7 billion

The unclaimed dividend of shareholders of Dangote Cement Plc grew to N4.7 billion as at December 31, 2023.

This is contained in the 2023 company’s audited annual report seen by Naijaonpoint.

A cursory look at the company’s audited financial statement released to the Nigerian Exchange Limited and the investment public shows that the outstanding unclaimed dividend represents about 6.82% growth from N4.4 billion declared by the group in 2022.

The group noted that it would continue to take steps in conjunction with registrars to ensure that shareholders receive their dividends.

Shareholders who are yet to complete the e-dividend registration are advised to download the registrar’s E-Dividend Mandate Activation Form, which is also available on registrars’ website.

Shareholders with dividend warrants and share certificates that have remained unclaimed or are yet to be presented for payment or returned for validation are advised to complete the e-dividend registration or contact the Registrar.

The company also encouraged members to notify the registrars of any changes in their details.

Regulators and quoted companies have continued to urge investors in the capital market to register for e-dividends so that they can receive the benefits of their investments in the capital market. Despite this effort, the growth of outstanding unclaimed dividends has continued to rise.

Reasons responsible for the growth of unclaimed dividends include, among others, death of shareholders.

There are issues of shareholders who have died and without information on next of kin, multiple applications by applicants during the investment process, and deliberate actions to deny investors their benefits through various schemes by some registrars and companies who lack the liquidity to pay.

Mike Eze, Managing Director, Crane Securities Limited,  while speaking with Naijaonpoint, traced the genesis of the rising wave of unclaimed dividends to indigenisation era of the administration of General Yakubu Gowon.

Speaking in the same vein, David Adonri,  Managing Director, Highcap Securities Limited, explained that unclaimed dividends are increasing every year due to several factors. According to him, the problem started several years ago during the indigenisation exercises when several shareholders made multiple subscriptions in fictitious names whose signatures they could not remember.

He noted that the affected shareholders are also unable to open bank accounts in these fictitious names for the e-dividend collection.

He added that most of the unclaimed dividends are statute-barred and forfeited to the companies, in which case recovery by the affected shareholders may not be possible in the absence of means of identification.