On April 12, BAT Zambia investors became the latest key stakeholders who will have to wait a little longer for their annual general meeting following a notice from the company’s Board postponing the event.
Prima Reassurance recently announced that their much anticipated AGM would be further pushed back to an unknown date to be advised by the Board. However, unlike in the Prima situation, BAT advised stakeholders that the date would now be set for end of April 2019.
“Further to the Notice and Agenda of the Annual Meeting (“AGM Notice”) published on the Stock Exchange News (“SENS”) on Tuesday, 26 February 2019 and in the press on 6 March and 8 March 2019, the Board of British American Tobacco Zambia (“BATZ” or “the Company”) wishes to advise shareholders and the general public that due to unforeseen delays in the printing and finalisation of the Annual Reports which contain the financial statements for the year ended 31st December 2018, together with the statutory AGM notice, the 57th Annual General Meeting (“AGM”) earlier scheduled to be held on Wednesday, 17 April 2019 is postponed and will now be held on Tuesday, 30 April 2019 starting at 10:00hrs at our offices on Plot No. PH1 IND 53 & 54 Lusaka South MultiFacility Economic Zone, Chifwema Road Lusaka to transact the same business mentioned in the same business mentioned in the AGM Notice”, read the statement issued by the BAT Board in Lusaka.
Analogous to the Prima postponement, BAT advised that they too had challenges with the finalization of Annual Report. However, unlike in the Prima scenario, Board Chairman Michael Mundashi will be pleased that the BAT management team managed to finalized audited financials. The gaffe in their case related to printing challenges.
Although the latest announcement came with an apology, the prime objective cannot be ignored of the company this opportunity to showcase their latest investment. BAT recently announced their full year results which saw the company increase turnover by 34%. Investors therefore will do well to take the opportunity that the management team has given them to have a look and feel of the company’s factory situated at their Lusaka South MultiFacility outlet.
Due to this particular investment, the company has been able to shave off most of the taxes they suffered due to importation of finished product which attracted higher taxes.
“We are excited to report that our newly constructed cigarette manufacturing plant is contributing positively to employment creation, wealth creation, and skills development in Zambia, and is expected to be formally commissioned this year (2019)”, read a statement from Micheal Mundashi published in the SENS announcement of 4th March 2019.
Although the company indicates that it has increased volumes of product moved, their 2018 audited financials also show a loss before taxation being recorded. “The loss before taxation was mainly due to high net finance costs driven by foreign exchange losses suffered on the US$15 million loan that the Company contracted in 2017 for the construction of the new factory”, further read the statement from the Board Chairman.