The Group Managing Director of C&I Leasing Plc, Mr Lenin Ugoji at the weekend sait the company is expanding its business into fleet management, and marine businesses targeted at yielding enhanced returns to shareholders with attendant raise in market share.
Ugoji, in a statement said: “Business expansion would come in the form of fleet management business, citing inherent opportunities in the fleet management space and in the marine business where the company is looking to acquire vessels for dry product movement in the near future”.
The Group Managing Director said this at the Annual General Meeting of the company for the year ended December 31, 2021 at the weekend in Lagos. It was the company’s 31st annual general meeting.
He said: “We are looking primarily at operational efficiency because even before you grow a business, you must be operationally fit. Part of what the new management wants to do is to bring about a lot more efficiency to the current operations, while we look at business expansion in a near future”, adding that “business expansion will come in the form of fleet management business because we feel that there are many opportunities in that space and in the marine business too but more in the non-oil sector so that we can diversify the risk of oil and gas”.
Ugoji said the company therefore may look at acquiring vessels in this area for dry product movement,” Ugoji added.
According to the release, the boss of the 32 years old company with so much experience in managing assets said the company was committed to sustained support of the nation’s infrastructure development.
He said “Nigeria is moving more and more towards infrastructure development and for a company like C & I Leasing, we believe that we can play a role in that sphere by facilitating such operations.
“C&I Leasing, is a 32 year old company with so much experience in managing assets. That experience can be brought to bear in supporting Nigeria in that direction.
“Tax moderation can help, and for a company like ours, we want to expand further to logistics, so that means, we require the right kind of infrastructure that can help us.
“We thank our shareholders for their patience; we also ask them to give us that support for us to be able to transform some of these initiatives into cogent sustainable benefits for them” Ugoji said.
He stated that the management would remain committed to operational efficiency despite rapid inflationary pressure and other macroeconomic challenges that have fundamentally impacted the leasing business in Nigeria directly.
Also speaking, the company’s Chairman, Samuel Maduka Onyishi, said the profit before tax for the Group increased by 9.5 percent to N542 million during the period under review from N490 million in 2020.
Onyishi said that the company’s core business lines: fleet management, outsourcing, and marine services, remained sustainable in the review period.
He said the company would continue to demonstrate a high degree of resilience rising incredibly to the challenging clime by seeking innovative novel technology solutions to propagate its business and revenue against the odds powered by the recent launch of an e-business drive and initiative.
“Technology solutions birthed in the year under review include the skill central e-learning platform which was launched by the outsourcing business; 360 Fleet solutions, vehicle monitoring initiative, digitalised marine vessel management solution,” he said.
According to him, the fleet management business has continued to achieve operational efficiency by servicing clients’ needs and reducing downtime.
He noted that a remarkable increase in visibility across wide demography in the digital space was achieved.
“This drive is aimed at reinforcing the company’s over 20 years presence/experience in the Human Resource space and further positioning the outsourcing business in the right trajectory as well as proactively solving the problem of employment, and talent mismatch in the country,” he said.
On the way forward, Onyishi said in 2022, the company is focused on the all-around improvement of the business and the delivery of a sterling and sustainable performance that enhances optimal returns to shareholders.
He noted that the Group has identified expanding medical and sales process outsourcing services, digital offerings such as online training, and after-lease services to a broader client base as some of the opportunities arising from the COVID-19 pandemic fallout.
“Your company is buoyed with short to long-term plans to cushion the negative headwinds of 2022. We shall continue our focus on leveraging technology to improve the efficiency of operations and business acquisition based on five pillars: data & analytics, automation, optimising infrastructure, legacy moderation, and cybersecurity.
“Cost management is also key to our short-term plans as we continue to thrive under the unprecedented business clime and seek opportunities to expand into new frontiers,” he said.
A look at the company financials in the year under review showed that the gross earnings of the Group declined by seven percent from N19.4 billion in 2020 to N18.2 billion in 2021, a performance the company attributed to the strangulating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Its profit after tax stood at N31.2 million from N321 million recorded in the comparative period of 2020. The Group’s total assets grew by four percent to N58.1 billion from N55.9 billion achieved in the corresponding period of 2020.
Shareholders present at the meeting, however, commended the efforts of the company in adherence to sound corporate governance and proper management of the company’s fleet in the year under review.
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