VFD Group Goes Public, Targets N5bn Bonds

By February 28, 2019 NEWS

VFD Group has announced its conversion from a company limited by liability to a public company.

The Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, VFD Group Plc, Mr Nonso Okpala, stated that the conversion took effect immediately, following the company’s successful raising of N2.8bn through a public offering that saw the number of shareholders increase from 50 to over 120.

Okpala, while speaking at a press conference in Lagos on Tuesday, said the rights issue was oversubscribed by N800,000 as the company sought to raise N2bn.

He said the company then went and filed its intention to become a public company with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Corporate Affairs Commission.

Okpala described the conversion as a step in the right direction, saying it gave reputational alignment with the company’s plan to raise N5bn in proposed bonds issuance before the end of the second quarter of the year.

He said, “The conversion will also ensure that we become a listed company by 2022. Going forward, we are seeking to acquire stakes in the banking and insurance sectors.

“For the banking sector, we have a team on the ground and we have filed an application for a banking licence, which we expect to come through towards the end of the year or early next year.

Our Plc status puts us in the right place to achieve our objectives.

“For the insurance sector, though we had a stake in NEM Insurance Plc, we sold it because as we grew our stake in the firm, we noticed a discomfort in conversation and diversity in goals.”

Okpala said the group then thought it wise to divest from the firm to allow the management run it as it deemed fit.

He stated that the group was looking for companies that shared similar goals to partner and support.

He said, “For companies that we partner, we contribute capital, the practice of world class governance and we have a great deal of technology that can be deployed to any company we seek to partner with or acquire.

“The proceeds of our proposed bonds issuance will be used in strengthening the operations of our subsidiaries, providing auto services for enhanced profitability and the rest will be used as working capital.”

“In line with this development, the group has appointed African Prudential Registrars as our official registrar and Kairos Capital as our financial advisers.”

Okpala added that plans had begun to list the shares of the group on the NASD OTC Securities Exchange before the end of the year to ensure the enhanced marketability of the said instrument.

Source: Punch