The Chief Executive Officer, Dangote Cement, Onne van der Weijde, who stated this on Friday while presenting the company’s first quarter results to the Nigerian Stock Exchange, also said that the earnings per share for the quarter increased by 36.2 per cent to N4.25.
He said, “Dangote Cement produced record financial results in the first three months of 2017. Despite lower group volumes, we delivered significantly higher revenues and EBITDA after realigning prices late in 2016. Our new pricing strategy meant every tonne worked harder for us in Nigeria, delivering 78.4 per cent more EBITDA per tonne than the same quarter last year.
“We have now begun sourcing a significant amount of coal from Nigerian mines owned by our parent, Dangote Industries, and this has not only helped us to improve margins, but also reduced our need for imported coal and the foreign currencies needed to buy it.
“Our pan-African operations performed strongly, increasing sales volumes by 21 per cent and revenues by 74.2 per cent. Pan-African operations now contribute nearly 28 per cent of group revenues and we are pleased to report a good start for our new import facility in Sierra Leone. We will begin operations in Congo in the coming weeks, further consolidating our position as sub-Saharan Africa’s leading supplier of cement.”
The Federal Government recently lauded Dangote Cement for its efforts in making the country to be self-sufficient in cement production.
The government confirmed that Nigeria had attained self-sufficiency in the production of cement and was now an exporter of the commodity, ascribing the feat to Dangote Cement, which spearheaded the backward integration policy introduced by the government.
The Minister for Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, who led a government team to the Dangote Cement plant in Ibese, Ogun State, said the government was happy with the leadership role played by Dangote Cement in executing the backward integration policy in the cement industry.
The minister said it was a success story that Nigeria, which a few years ago imported over 60 per cent of her cement needs, now could produce enough to meet local demands and still export to other nations.
Fayemi had said, “As you all know, as the Federal Government moves to diversify the economy away from oil; two areas the government is focusing on are agriculture and solid minerals, this is why we are embarking on a tour of mining operations across the country to know the challenges they face and what can be done to tackle those challenges.
“What Dangote is doing is marvellous. We need to commend them. The way they led the backward integration policy to turn around our fortunes in the cement industry. I am delighted to see the development here bigger than what I saw the last time. And we are looking at how we can replicate the success in the cement industry in other non-oil sectors of our economy.”
Dangote Cement is Africa’s leading cement producer with nearly 46 million metric tonnes per annum capacity across the continent, a fully integrated quarry-to-customer producer with production capacity of 29.25 million metric tonnes per annum in Nigeria.