By Emmy Olaki
The New Visionâ€™s net worth has more than doubled in the last four years and growth prospects remain strong, management said yesterday.
Speaking at a Facts Behind the Figures briefing at the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE), William Pike, the chief executive officer, said the companyâ€™s net worth is sh12b this year, up from about sh5.5b in 2001.
â€œThe companyâ€™s turnover in 2004/05 increased by 8% from sh23.77b in 2003/04 to sh25.65b. This was driven mainly by strong advertising sales and growth in commercial printing. By the end of the first quarter of 2005/06, the outlook and company performance was positive,â€ Pike said.
As a result, the company increased the proposed dividend to shareholders for the year to sh350m up from sh250m in 2004/05.
â€œThe increased dividend reflected general confidence that the financial performance of the firm remains solid and there are good prospects for future profit generation,â€ he said. Pike (right) said the companyâ€™s overall cash collections also improved to 97%, an excellent performance that kept the company on a stable financial footing.
He said, â€œThe New Vision has ordered driers and computer to plate outputter to improve colour print quality. This substantial investment ($320,000) is expected to deliver better value to advertisers and readers, thereby sustaining advertising revenue and circulation,â€ he said.
However, Pike said The New Vision is undervalued at the USE and if the Government sold off another 20%, it would raise the value because people would have more confidence in the company. New Visionâ€™s shares are trading at sh250 at USE. â€œThe share value is roughly the same as the balance sheet value. Price Earnings stand at about 8.5 after tax, which is below value. The sale of more shares would boost our value,â€ he said.
Simon Rutega, the chief executive officer of USE, said there are negotiations with the Government to have more shares listed on the bourse.
â€œThere is a higher value in New Vision than is reflected on the market. This shows there is more potential. Getting more shares listed will happen sooner,â€ Rutega said.