Highest paying companies in Nigeria in 2022

Article summary

  • Seplat Energy, TotalEnergies, and MTN Nigeria emerged as the highest-paying companies in Nigeria based on average employee expenses in 2022.
  • These companies prioritize attractive compensation packages to attract and retain top talent, including training programs, bonuses, and performance-based incentives.
  • Employee compensation plays a crucial role in company success, impacting productivity, performance, and the ability to reduce petroleum product imports in Nigeria.

Seplat Energy, TotalEnergies, and MTN Nigeria led the list of highest-paying companies in the year 2022, based on average employee expenses for the year.

This is according to an analysis by Nairalytics, the research arm of Nairametrics. As Nigeria’s economy continues to expand and diversify, employee compensation has emerged as a major incentive to attract and retain top talents as businesses seek to maintain market dominance in terms of performance and level of employees.

Companies do not only rely on attractive wages to attract the best talents, but they also adopt training programmes, insurance, allowances, shared-based payment, and performance-tied bonuses. Companies with the highest average payments to their employees are referred to as well-paying businesses.

These well-paying businesses not only make a big economic contribution to the nation, but they also serve as benchmarks for industry compensation and career advancement.

The success of a company is greatly influenced by the remuneration of its employees. Beyond recruiting and keeping talent, it also acts as a potent incentive that directly affects worker productivity and performance.

This analysis is based on the Bluechip companies listed on the Nigerian Exchange. It is worth noting that the analysis made use of available information in their audited results for the year 2022. FBN Holdings was not included in this article, as the group is yet to release its financials for the review year.

Seplat Energy – N38.91 million

Seplat Energy incurred an average annual cost of N38.91 million on its employees in 2022. The upstream Nigerian oil company spent a sum of N23.19 billion on personnel expenses in 2022, a 34.3% increase when compared to N17.27 billion recorded in the previous year.

  • In terms of basic salary, Seplat spent N12.32 billion in the review year, in contrast to N10.26 billion paid to employees in 2021. The staff strength of the company also rose in tandem with personnel cost and salary as it increased by 12% to 596 from 532 in the prior year.
  • A further breakdown of the data from the company’s audited result showed that most of the employees (43.5%) earned above N14.69 million annually, representing an average monthly take-home of N1.22 million.
  • Additionally, Seplat incurred N1.44 billion as housing allowances in the year under review, which is 18.3% lower than the N1.76 billion spent in 2021.

TotalEnergies – N30.48 million

TotalEnergies followed as the second highest paying company in 2022, after incurring an annual average personal cost of N30.48 million. Total personal cost rose by 18.2% from N11.06 billion to N13.08 billion in 2022.

  • Staff strength declined marginally by 1.61% to 429 employees from 436 recorded in the previous year. In terms of salary-spend, it increased by 12.02% from N8.71 billion to N9.76 billion in review year, despite a decline in staff numbers.
  • This may be attributed to some promotions in the company, as junior staff reduced from 15 to 11, while managerial staff increase by 6.7% to 159.
  • Further insight showed that more than half of the employees in TotalEnergies were amongst the highest paid in the company. 225 employees earned above N15.5 million annually.

MTN Nigeria – N26.91 million

Nigeria’s telco giant, MTN recorded N45.08 billion as total employee cost in 2022, a 6.82% decline when compared to its personnel cost of N48.38 billion in the previous year.

  • In terms of salaries and wages, MTN Nigeria paid its employees N33.93 billion in the review year, which is also lower than the N34.42 billion recorded in 2021. Meanwhile, the staff strength of MTN declined by 1.41% to 1,675 in the review year from 1,699 employees in their payroll in the prior year.
  • According to information in the notes to the account, about 64% of the total employee force were part of the highest paid employees. Specifically, 1,070 employees earned an average of N12.5 million and above in the review year.
  • Interestingly, the number of employees that earned the highest annual salary in 2022 increased significantly compared to the previous year (From 612 staff to 1,070). This indicates significant salary increase and/or promotions in the company.

Nigerian Breweries – N19.12 million

Nigerian Breweries ranked fourth on the list with an average annual personnel cost of N19.12 million in 2022, an increase from 18.1 million recorded in the previous year. The brewing company spent a sum of N51.34 billion on personnel cost, marginally higher than N51.01 billion recorded in the previous year.

  • In terms of actual salaries paid, the company incurred N38.76 billion in the review year, from N36.51 billion recorded in 2021.
  • Meanwhile, employees in the company reduced from 2,740 in 2021 to 2,685 in the year under review. A cursory review of the company’s financials showed that 84.7% of the company’s workforce were among the higher paid staff (N5 million and above).
  • Further breakdown of the company’s personnel expenses includes shared based payments of N1.3 billion, training and recruitment of N2.15 billion, medical expenses of N1.06 billion, while other undefined personnel expenses gulped N3.66 billion in the review year.

Access Holdings – N17.1 million

Access Holdings completed the top-five paying companies, representing the only bank in the top five list. Access Holdings incurred an average of N17.1 million on personnel cost in 2022, from N14.05 million recorded in the previous year.

  • Total personnel cost increased by 20.7% from N96.6 billion recorded in 2021 to N116.6 billion in the year under review. Personnel cost increased despite the decline in staff strength, which reduced from 6,875 to 6,824 in the review period.
  • In terms of the salary, the newly restructured company paid N105.6 billion as salaries compared to N91.1 billion incurred in the previous year.
  • Staff composition of the company showed that 545 of the employees were in managerial positions, while 6,279 employees functioned in other capacities below management level.
  • Further analysis showed that about 10% of the employees earned N18 million and above annually in 2022.

It is worth noting that some organizations though not part of the largest firms on the NGX recorded significant average personnel cost in the review year. Some of these firms include Chams Holding (N34.82 million), Okomu Oil Palm (N26.49 million), and Ardova (N20.1 million).

Bottom line

In today’s competitive job market, skilled professionals are more likely to be drawn to companies that provide attractive compensation and benefits. Hence, offering competitive compensation packages by companies is crucial for attracting and retaining talented employees.

Competitive employee compensation also enhances employee motivation and engagement. When employees feel adequately rewarded for their work, they are more likely to be committed, productive, and satisfied in their roles. Competitive reward also helps to reduce employee turnover in the organization, giving firms edge over other industry players.

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