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EPL: You’ll end up paying ‘Messi wage’ – Gary Neville warns Chelsea

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Manchester United legend, Gary Neville, has warned Chelsea that they may still have to pay their recently signed youngsters wages similar to that of Lionel Messi despite their policy of handing them long-term contracts.

Chelsea recently spent about £323 million in transfer fees to sign eight players during the January transfer window.

Nearly all of the new signings have been signed on extra lengthy contracts.

The likes of Mykhaylo Mudryk and Enzo Fernandez have been handed eight-and-a-half-year contracts while Benoit Badiashile was given a seven-and-a-half-year deal.

But Neville believes that lengthy deals don’t guarantee Chelsea the financial luxury of paying their recently signed players low wages for a long period of time.

The former defender cited the example of Mudryk, 22, as he said on his podcast: “Let’s say Mykhailo becomes a Lionel Messi in four years and Chelsea would sit here today and say, ‘We have got him locked down for another four years on a lower wage.

“I don’t care whether he’s got four years left on his contract or not, Mudryk will kick off, his agent will kick off, he will down tools and say, ‘I want more money.’

“You will end up paying the Messi wage, or you will have a very unhappy player for the last four years who will feel he’s been exploited because he signed an eight-year contract at the age of 22.

“In football, in this country, with players coming particularly from international soil, I do not see how an eight-year contract can be honoured if the player progresses into something far greater than he is today.”

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StanbicIBTC declares N2.20 dividend to shareholders

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StanbicIBTC Nigeria has declared to pay its shareholders a final dividend of N2.20 per ordinary share of 50k each, totaling N28.51 billion for the period ended Dec. 31, 2023.
Mr Chidi Okezie, Company Secretary, StanbicIBTC, announced this in a disclosure sent to the Nigerian Exchange Ltd. (NGX) on Thursday in Lagos.
Okezie said that the proposed dividend, to be paid in April 19, is subject to deduction of appropriate withholding tax and approval.
He said that shareholders whose names appear in the register
of members as at the close of business on April 19 would be paid their dividend.
According to him, this is in addition to the interim dividend of N1.50 paid in September 2023, thus bringing the 2023 total dividend to N3.70.
Okezie said, “The register of shareholders will be closed from April 22 to April 26.
“On May 17, dividends will be paid electronically to shareholders whose names appear on the register of members as at close of business.
“On April 19, shareholders who have completed the e-dividend registration and mandated the Registrar to pay their dividends directly into their bank accounts would be paid.
“E-dividend registration shareholders who are yet to complete the e-dividend registration are advised to download the Registrar’s E-dividend Mandate Activation Form.
“Shareholders with dividend warrants and share certificates that have remained unclaimed or are yet to be presented for payment or returned for validation are advised to complete the e-dividend registration or contact the Registrars,”Olezie said.
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NERC increases electric tariff

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By Matthew Denis

The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has granted permission for electricity tariff hike for customers categorized under Band A classification.

During a press briefing in Abuja on Wednesday Musliu Oseni, NERC’s Vice Chairman, announced that customers will now pay N225 per kilowatt-hour, up from the current rate of N66.

According to Oseni, customers represents 15 percent of the 12 million electricity customers in the country.

He explained that the commission had also downgraded some customers on the Band A to Band B due to non-fulfilment of the required hours of electricity provided by the electricity distribution company.

“We currently have 800 feeders that are categorised as Band A, but it will now be reduced to under 500. This means that 17 percent now qualify as Band A feeders. These feeders only service 15 percent of total electricity customers connected to the feeders.”

According to him the commission has issued an order which is titled April supplementary order and the commission allows a 235 kilowatt per hour.”

He added that the review will not affect customers on the other Bands.

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Zenith is Nigeria’s best bank at Global finance award for the fourth time in five years

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Zenith Bank Plc has emerged as the Best Bank in Nigeria in the Global Finance Best Banks Awards 2024, winning the award for the fourth time since 2019. The Bank was among other banks from 36 countries in Africa recognised as the prestigious Global Finance announced its 31st Annual Best Bank Awards Winners.

The editors of Global Finance made the selections after extensive consultations with corporate financial executives, bankers and banking consultants, and analysts worldwide. Factors considered in selecting the top banks ranged from the quantitative objective to the informed subjective. Objective criteria considered included: growth in assets, profitability, geographic reach, strategic relationships, new business development and innovation in products. Subjective criteria included the opinions of equity analysts, credit rating analysts, banking consultants and others involved in the industry.

Commenting on the award, the outgoing Group Managing Director/Chief Executive of Zenith Bank, Dr. Ebenezer Onyeagwu said, “This award serves as a powerful affirmation of our resilience and tenacity despite headwinds and a very challenging macroeconomic environment. Indeed, it is a testament to our status as the leading financial institution in Nigeria, dedicated unwaveringly to delivering exceptional value to our stakeholders.”

He expressed profound gratitude to the founder and chairman, Jim Ovia, CFR, for his exceptional vision and foundational role in establishing a resilient and enduring financial institution. He also lauded the board for their astute insights and exemplary leadership, the staff for their steadfast commitment and unwavering dedication, and the customers for their staunch loyalty to the Zenith brand.

Publisher and editorial director of Global Finance, Joseph D. Giarraputo said: “Banking has reached another watershed moment with the debut of generative artificial intelligence, which promises to rewrite the industry playbook.”

He added that: “In this ever-changing environment, the Best Bank Awards recognize the financial institutions that offer the broadest range of services, long-term reliability, and technological innovation.”

Global Finance’s “Best Banks Awards” are recognised amongst the world’s most influential banking/finance and corporate professionals as the most coveted and credible awards in the banking industry, with winners chosen in 150 countries and territories across Africa, AsiaPacific, the Caribbean, Central America, Central & Eastern Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, North America and Western Europe.

Founded in 1987, Global Finance regularly selects the top performers among banks and other financial services providers, and the awards have become a trusted standard of excellence for the global financial community.

Zenith Bank’s track record of excellent performance has earned the brand numerous awards, including being recognised as the Best Bank for Digital Solutions in Nigeria in the Euromoney Awards 2023, being listed in the World Finance Top 100 Global Companies in 2023; being recognised as the Number One Bank in Nigeria by Tier-1 Capital, for the 14th consecutive year, in the 2023 Top 1000 World Banks Ranking published by The Banker Magazine; Best Commercial Bank, Nigeria, for three consecutive years from 2021 to 2023, in the World Finance Banking Awards; Best Corporate Governance Bank, Nigeria in the World Finance Corporate Governance Awards 2022 and 2023; Bank of the Year (Nigeria) in The Banker’s Bank of the Year Awards 2020 and 2022; Best Bank in Nigeria, for three consecutive years from 2020 to 2022, in the Global Finance World’s Best Banks Awards; Best in Corporate Governance’ Financial Services’ Africa, for four successive years from 2020 to 2023, by the Ethical Boardroom; Most Sustainable Bank, Nigeria in the International Banker 2023 Banking Awards; Best Commercial Bank, Nigeria and Best Innovation in Retail Banking, Nigeria in the International Banker 2022 Banking Awards.

Also, the bank emerged as the Most Valuable Banking Brand in Nigeria in the Banker Magazine Top 500 Banking Brands 2020 and 2021; Bank of the Year 2023 and Retail Bank of the Year for three consecutive years from 2020 to 2022, at the BusinessDay Banks and Other Financial Institutions (BAFI) Awards. Similarly, Zenith Bank was named Bank of the Decade (People’s Choice) at the ThisDay Awards 2020, Bank of the Year 2021 by Champion Newspaper, Bank of the Year 2022 by New Telegraph Newspaper, and Most Responsible Organisation in Africa 2021 by SERAS Awards.

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