Nigeria’s Forte Oil Plans a $66m Share Sale

Nigeria’s Forte Oil Plans a $66m Share Sale

Nigeria’s Forte Oil announced that it plans a $66m share sale to institutional and high net worth investors and has applied for regulatory approval, Reuters reported.

The energy firm said the capital raising will be done as a public offer for shares through a book building process to help price discovery. It applied to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Nigerian Stock Exchange for approval, Kitco informed.

Forte said its core investor, Zenon Petroleum and Gas Limited, owned by billionaire Femi Otedola, will not participate in the offer.

Nigerian companies are going through a tough time brought on by low oil prices which tipped the economy into a recession, depleted the country’s foreign reserves, weakened the currency and caused chronic dollar shortages, frustrating businesses.

Several firms including Guinness Nigeria reported losses last year, due to the weak economy, and are set to raise funds from existing shareholders.

In 2016, Forte posted a 24% fall in pretax profit, which knocked its shares down 74.4%. In 2017, the shares have fallen 34.2%, giving it a market value of $226m. It ended 4.98% down to $0.16 in late June, under-performing the main index which gained 0.96%.

Forte said it was on track to achieve its target for 2017 and that based on its performance so far it could payout half of its earnings as dividend.

The company said its fuel distribution and power business accounted for 95% of its operating profit and that it hoped to announce its half-year audited account before July 31.


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