By Ishemunyoro Chingwere
State petroleum company, Petrotrade has for the third year running declared a dividend to Government after registering an after tax profit of $3,75 million for the year ended December 2017.
Speaking to journalists after the firm’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Thursday, secretary for Energy and Power Development Patson Mbiriri, said although there was room for further growth, Government was happy with the company’s progress.
“The company declared a dividend today (Thursday last week) to the main shareholder which is Government of $1, 13 million for the year 2017 in accordance with its dividend policy,” said Mr Mbiriri.
“That dividend is a third of its profit and that’s a significant increase from 2016 when it declared a little over $300 000 (dividend) to Government,” he said.
In his report to the AGM, Acting chief executive officer Godfrey Ncube, said the company’s revenue grew by 29 percent from $106 million in 2016 to $136,8 million in the year under review, a net profit jump of 204 percent to $3,75 million.
The growth was largely spurred by increased volumes, which saw main fuel sales increasing by 20 percent. Consequently, the company’s market share in the petroleum sector also increased from eight to nine percent.
On the outlook, the company is still pursuing a private investor in line with a Government directive that it should partly privatise. The investor will also come in with much needed funding to finance the company’s envisaged expansion and growth.
“The company is in search for a strategic partner who should bring about the technical and knowledge benefits in view of the country opening up business to international players,” said Mr Ncube.
“Hydrocarbon fuels are likely to remain dominant products in the short term to medium term despite the prospects of electrical vehicles hitting markets in the developed world,” he said. The Herald.