KIPCO expects 21st year of profitability in 2012
- Kuwait: Tuesday, April 10 - 2012 at 16:37
- PRESS RELEASE
At its annual Investors Forum, KIPCO - the Kuwait Projects Company - said it expected to maintain its strong financial position and deliver its twenty-first consecutive year of profitability in 2012.
The Investors Forum followed the company's General Assembly meeting where KIPCO shareholders approved a proposed dividend of 20% (20 fils per share) and a stock dividend of 5%.
As part of its review of the last 12 months, KIPCO said 2011 was its twentieth consecutive year of profitability and the tenth consecutive year of paying dividends. The company added that over the last ten years it had achieved a cumulative profit of KD796m ($2.9bn), distributed KD331m ($1.2bn) in shareholder dividends and delivered a cumulative annual shareholder return of 30%.
At the Forum, KIPCO also outlined its plans for 2012. The company said that over the next 12 months it intends to deleverage some of its operating companies with debt repayments totaling KD174m ($625m). KIPCO also plans cost reductions at subsidiary level during the year.
KIPCO also outlined its expectations for its core operating companies for 2012. The company expects Burgan Bank Group to increase its operating profits and market share during the year.
KIPCO said that OSN - the region's leading satellite TV broadcaster - would enhance its Arabic content and increase its market share through growth in its subscriber base.
KIPCO also expects its regional insurance group - Gulf Insurance Company - to increase its market share and continue its development of products and distribution channels. The company also said both Burgan and Gulf Insurance will be evaluating further acquisitions during the year to extend their regional networks.
Speaking at the Forum, KIPCO's Vice Chairman, Mr Faisal Al Ayyar, said: "2011 was another landmark year in our history because it was our twentieth consecutive year of profitability and our tenth consecutive year of dividend distribution. Over the last ten and twenty years, we have consistently delivered double-digit returns for our shareholders. This very impressive track record underlines our ability to create shareholder value, even in hard times."
"In stark contrast to many other companies in Kuwait, we have not only weathered the financial crisis, but have emerged from it stronger. By managing our funding, maintaining financial discipline and strengthening the financial structure of our operating companies, we have built solid foundations for future growth. We have met and exceeded the expectations of our shareholders in the past and we intend to continue to do so in the years to come."
Commenting on the outlook for 2012, Mr Al Ayyar said: "Overall, we are optimistic for 2012 because we expect our market share in financial services and media to grow. We also plan to consolidate our market leadership, maintain our healthy cash position and deliver our twenty-first consecutive year of profitability. Our focus for the coming year will be to pay down debt, cut costs at subsidiary level and improve the performance of our operating companies. We are taking these measures in 2012, so that in future years, our shareholders will continue to see the level of results they have come to expect from us."
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