Ashaka Cement Climbs to Highest in More Than Seven Months

Sept. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Ashaka Cement Plc, a Nigerian unit of Lafarge SA, rose to the highest in more than seven months on bets expanding sales will improve profit.

The stock rose for a fourth day, gaining 5 percent, the daily limit, to 11.28 naira at the close in Lagos, the commercial capital, the highest since Jan. 20. The shares have fallen 0.6 percent this year, compared with a 17.5 percent gain in the Nigerian Stock Exchange All-Share Index over the same period.

“Production picked up last year after Lafarge raised its stake,” Austin Eseha, analyst at Lagos-based Partnership Investment Co., said today in a telephone interview. “We’ve also noticed an increase in its cement distribution,” prompting increased demand for its shares in recent days, he said. Two calls for comment on a phone number listed phone for the company weren’t answered.

Ashaka Cement’s annual profit through December rose 19 percent to 3.57 billion naira ($22.6 million) from a year earlier. Revenue increased to 20.8 billion naira from 19.2 billion Naira.

To contact the reporter on this story: Emele Onu in Lagos at eonu1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dulue Mbachu at dmbachu@bloomberg.net