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    Dangote Cement sales surge to N332.7 billion as Q1 profit hits N90 billion

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    Africa’s biggest cement manufacturer Dangote Cement Plc Friday said its after-tax profit from January through March rose by almost half to N89.7 billion, compared to the same period of last year.

    Sales surged by more than one-third from N249.182 billion to N332.7 billion, with Nigeria – its home market – delivering N239.7 billion of that sum while the rest of its operations across Africa contributed N93 billion or 28 per cent, the company’s unaudited earnings report for the first quarter showed.

    Africa’s biggest cement-maker is facing soaring demand in Nigeria and has lined up strategies to expand by over one third of its current capacity as the country’s cement consumption spikes by 40 per cent.

    “We are expanding capacity from about 50,000 tons a day at the beginning of the year to 70,000 tons a day at the end of the year,” Edwin Devakumar told Bloomberg last Friday.

    Pre-tax profit stood at N130.1 billion, 48 per cent bigger than that of the first quarter of 2020.

    Profit after tax came to N89.710 billion, hammered by a N15.790 billion loss in pan-African operations, which curbed an after-tax profit of N103.776 billion from the Nigerian unit. That compares with the N60.592 billion posted in the corresponding period of last year.

    Earnings per share advanced to N3.60 up from N5.29.

    Last week, the House of Representatives lambasted the dominance of the Nigerian cement trade by Dangote Cement, BUA Cement and Lafarge Africa, saying price increase had stood in the way of construction, which is vital to economic recovery and calling for more flexible conditions to attract new players.

    Dangote Cement, which controls about 61 per cent of the market, has denied insinuations of price-fixing.

    The Nigerian government Thursday handed Dangote Cement, the country’s biggest company by market value, a tax credit worth $54 million or N22.3 billion or the construction of Apapa-Oworonshoki-Ojota road in Lagos and the Lokoja-Obajana-Kabba road connecting Kogi and Kwara States.

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