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Communications Fiji Limited which is the parent company of Legend FM, FM96, Viti FM, Navtarang, Radio Sargam and fijivillage and is the South Pacific’s largest broadcast organisation has completed 19 years of listing on the South Pacific Stock Exchange.
Board Chairman William Parkinson says at the time of listing, CFL offered 750,000 shares at $1 and now CFL has 3.558 million shares on issue with an all-time high market price of $6.22 which totals to a market value of $22.13 million.
Parkinson says over the 19 years of being listed, CFL has rewarded its shareholders with total dividends paid standing at around $8.11 million adding in terms of shareholder returns, CFL shares worth $1 per share at the time of listing is now valued at $8.51 per share after accounting for the share price appreciation and the dividends paid out by the company.
He adds in 2000 the CFL Group comprised of three stations in Fiji (FM96, Navtarang and Viti FM), two in Papua New Guinea, (Nau FM and YUMI FM), the Total Event Company and a fledgling fijivillage.com.
Parkinson says 20 years later, Radio Sargam and Legend FM have been added to the Fiji operations and Legend FM in Papua New Guinea.
He says fijivillage is now Fiji’s largest news website and a prime source of news and recently a similar news website PNGhausbung.com was launched in the PNG market adding that CFL has a social media presence that outstrips any other media organisation in the market and a multimedia production house, The Magic Factory, a new revenue earner in Fiji.
He further says CFL also managed to buy back its 50 percent stake in 231 Waimanu Rd Ltd which was sold as part of the restructure post 2000.
Parkinson says when the initial public offering was announced many were a little puzzled by the timing adding the CFL prospectus launched in late 2001 was based purely on the strength and potential of its brands and teams in Fiji and Papua New Guinea.
He adds the board at the time led by Chairman Hari Punja, who had much previous experience in listing on the SPX, saw this not only as an opportunity to strengthen the company’s balance sheet but also as a way of allowing listeners and most importantly staff to own shares.
Parkinson says despite difficult times facing the world and Fiji in particular, Communications Fiji Ltd continues to grow in both its major markets adding CFL entered 2020 debt free and in a very strong financial position.
He says despite all the challenges in the Fiji market, it is delivering strong cash surpluses and growing critical market share.
Parkinson says PNG FM Ltd, building on its position as Papua New Guinea’s biggest media organisation in terms of market reach, will deliver a solid profit for 2020 and is in the final stages of completing the purchase of a land in Port Moresby to build PNG FM HAUS.