The Diageo group aims to increase the dividend each year and the decision in respect of the dividend is made with reference to dividend cover as well as current performance trends including sales and profit after tax together with cash generation. Diageo targets dividend cover (the ratio of basic earnings per share before exceptional items to dividend per share) within the range of 1.8-2.2 times. For the year ended 30 June 2021 dividend cover is 1.6 times. The recommended final dividend for the year ended 30 June 2021, to be put to the shareholders for approval at the Annual General Meeting is 44.59 pence, an increase of 5% on the prior year final dividend. This brings the full year dividend to 72.55 pence per share, an increase of 4% on the prior year. They will keep future returns of capital, including dividends, under review through year ending 30 June 2022 to ensure they allocate Diageo's capital in the best way to maximize value for the business and their stakeholders.
Subject to approval by shareholders, the final dividend will be paid to holders of ordinary shares and US ADRs on register as of 27 August 2021. The ex-dividend date both for the holders of the ordinary shares and for US ADR holders is 26 August 2021.The final dividend, once approved by shareholders, will be paid to shareholders on 7 October 2021 and payment to US ADR holders will be made on 13 October 2021. A dividend reinvestment plan is available to holders of ordinary shares in respect of the final dividend and the plan notice date is 16 September 2021.