BusinessDay

Nigeria’s 10 most profitable companies in 2021

Nigeria’s biggest publicly listed companies were faced with a myriad of challenges in 2021 with the COVID-19 pandemic and currency-induced inflationary pressures eroding profit margins the previous year.

Economic activities gradually improved in 2021 and BusinessDay analysis shows the country’s biggest listed companies on the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) have leveraged a combination of factors, including strong unit volume growth, pricing and favourable base effects to post significant upticks in both top-line and bottom-line figures.

The performance of these biggest publicly listed companies mirrors the recovery rate of the Nigerian economy. The economy grew by 4.03 percent in the third quarter of 2021, showing sustained growth over the last four quarters since the recession witnessed in 2020.

BusinessDay’s analysis of the financial performance of the 30 biggest listed companies on the NGX shows Dangote Cement, MTN, Zenith Bank, GTCO, BUA Cement, Nestle, First Bank of Nigeria Holding, WAPCO, Stanbic Bank, and Seplat were the most profitable companies in 2021. Their large size worked in their favour.

Dangote Cement

Dangote Cement is Africa’s largest cement company with the largest market valuation and largest profit after tax of N4.35 trillion and N278 billion, respectively, in the first nine months of 2021. This is a 33 percent increase in profit from N208.6 billion in the nine-month period of 2020.

The company’s Earning Per Share was N16.23 in the first nine months of this year compared with N12.25 in the corresponding period last year. Dangote Cement began the year with a share price of N244.90 and has since gained 4.12 percent on that price valuation.

Dangote Cement has continued to beat industry peers to become the most efficient cement maker in the industry in the first nine months of 2021.

MTN

MTN Nigeria is the second most profitable company in Nigeria and also the second most capitalised company on the Exchange. The largest telecom network has a market value of N3.81 trillion and profit after tax of N220.3 billion in the first nine months of 2021.

The company recorded a 52.74 percent increase compared wth N144.2 billion profit after tax from the same period last year.

The earning per share for the nine months to September of 2021 was N10.82 compared with N7.09 in the same period of 2020. MTN began the year with a share price of N169.90 and has since gained 10.1 percent on that price valuation.

Read also: Here’s NGX Q3 fact sheet

Zenith Bank

Zenith Bank is the third most profitable company. The bank has the largest market capitalisation and profitability among the other banks. It surpassed Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTC0) in Market Cap for the first time on November 6, with a market cap of N779.6 billion.

Zenith Bank had a profit after tax of N160.59 billion in the first nine months of 2021. This represents an increase of 0.8 percent when compared with N159.32 billion in the same period under review of the last year

Earnings per share for the period of 2021 was N5.11 from N5.07 in the same period last year.

GTCO

GTCO landed in fourth place in profitability with a profit after tax of N129.4 billion in the first nine months of 2021. This is a decline of 9.96 percent compared with N142.28 billion in the first nine months of 2020. It has a market capitalisation of N753 billion.

Guaranty Trust Holding began the year with a share price of N32.35 but has lost 20.9 percent off that price valuation. The company’s basic earnings per share also decreased to N4.54 in the first nine months of 2021 from N5.02 in the comparable period of 2020.

BUA Cement

BUA Cement reported a 23.22 percent increase in its profit after tax in the period ended September 30, 2021, to N65.91 billion from N 53.49 billion in the same period of 2020.

BUA Cement began the year with a share price of N77.35 but has since lost 3.68 percent off that price valuation. However, its earnings per share increased to N195 in the nine months to September of 2021 from N158 in the comparable period of the previous year.

Nestle

Nestle ranked fifth with a profit after tax of N33.5 billion in nine months September 2021. This is an improvement by 5 percent from N31.9 billion realised in the corresponding period of 2020. Nigeria’s leading consumer goods company has a valuation of N1.11 trillion.

The earnings per share of the company increased to N14.95 in the period under review from N12.76 in the comparable period of 2020. Nestle began the year with a share price of N1,505 but has since lost 7.31 percent off that price valuation.

FBNH

With a market capitalisation of N434 billion, First Bank of Nigeria Holdings recorded a profit of N40.79 billion in the first nine months of 2021, a 40.15 percent reduction compared with N68.15 billion in the corresponding period last year.

FBN began the year with a share price of N7.15 and has since gained 69.2 percent on that price valuation. The lender’s earnings per share was also reduced to N1.12 in the first nine months of 2021 from N1.87 in the comparative period of 2020.

WAPCO

WAPCO made a profit of N40.39 billion in the nine months to September report of 2021, an increase of 43 percent from N28.2 billion in the same period last year. The cement maker’s market capitalisation was N393 billion.

The earnings per share of WAPCO increased to N251 in the first nine months of 2021 from N175 in the same period last year. Lafarge Wapco began the year with a share price of N21.05 and has since gained 15.9 percent on that price valuation.

Stanbic IBTC

Stanbic IBTC made a profit of N39.95 billion in the first nine months of 2021, a decline of 39.6 percent from N66.16 billion in the same period last year. The lender has a market capitalisation of N466 billion.

Its earnings per share declined to N293 in the first nine months this year from N580 in the same period last year. Although Stanbic began the year with a share price of N44.05, it has since lost 18.3 percent off that price valuation.

Seplat Energy

Seplat Energy, though the least among the top 10 profitable companies, recorded a profit of N13.90 billion in the first nine months of 2021 after making a loss of N33.68 billion in the same period last year.

Seplat Energy began the year with a share price of N402.30 and has since gained 61.6 percent on that price valuation. Its market capitalisation was N382.55 billion.

Get real time updates directly on you device, subscribe now.