Universal Insurance obtains approval to raise capital

The management of Universal Insurance Plc has received approval from its shareholders to proceed with the plan to increase the capital base. With this development, there are chances that it could meet up with the insurance recapitalisation deadline.

The company obtained the shareholders’ approval during its 49th Annual General Meeting, where it proposed to increase its capital base through a rights issue, in accordance with the recapitalisation process.

Nairametrics learnt that out of the over 30 billion shares registered by the company, 14 billion shares are available for issuance, while 16 billion shares have already been issued.

Reacting to the request to raise funds in a statement, the company said, “The board had sought and obtained the shareholders’ approval to raise the company’s capital through right issues, share reconstruction. We are obliged to raise additional equity capital for the company up to the maximum limit of the authorised share capital, whether by way of special placement or public offer with or without a preferential allotment/or rights issue or a combination of any of them.

“Either locally or internationally and upon such terms and conditions as the Directors may deem fit in the interest of the company and subject to the approval of the regulatory authorities.

“In the event of over subscription of the offer/issue to capitalise the excess money and allot additional shares to the extent that can be accommodated by the company’s unissued share capital subject to the approval of the regulatory authorities and that the proceeds should be used for the same purpose as the offer/issue.”

Universal seeking foreign influence: According to the acting Chairman of the company, Anthony Okocha, Universal Insurance is considering various investor options, which include foreign involvement. The company, which has N6.5 billion and needs N3.5 billion to make up for recapitalisation requirement as a general business insurer, didn’t release much details into its recapitalisation plan.

“More discussion is ongoing but could not be discussed prematurely. We are also looking at rights issue; the company is in discussion with core investors and probable foreign influence into your company,” Okocha said in a Punch report.

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