Before tax for the audited half-year financial results ended June 30, 2017, the United Bank for Africa Plc, had recorded a substantial rise of 65.5 per cent in its profit.
In a statement on Thursday, This financial institution grew its gross earnings for the period by 34.5 per cent to N222.7bn, as against N165.6bn reported in June 2016.
The bank’s rising business performance and increasing share of customers’ wallet were driven by the 44.3 per cent and 16.0 per cent growth in interest income and non-funded income, respectively. The operating income of the group stood at N161.8bn, compared to N116.2bn recorded in the corresponding period of 2016, representing a 39.2 per cent growth.
The group said it managed through its cost lines to deliver a first-rate result and grow shareholders’ wealth, nonetheless the impact of naira depreciation, double-digit inflation in Nigeria and a number of other African countries where the bank operates.
Its PBT for the period stood at N57.5bn as against N34.8bn posted in the corresponding period of 2016.
While the group closed the half year with total assets of N3.69tn, a growth of 5.3 per cent, it grew gross loans to N1.6tn, a four per cent growth when compared to the group loan book as at December 31, 2016.
The Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer UBA, Kennedy Uzoka, said that the results again demonstrates the strong momentum of the bank, as they deliver continuous improvement across businesses and key performance metrics.
He went on to say that the bank’s firm focus on customer service excellence is translating to strong operational and financial efficiency gains as they have achieved better pricing on assets and liabilities, leading to continued improvement in the net interest margin to 7.3 per cent.
According to him, UBA has made considerable progress in its retail banking penetration, gaining market share in deposits, at a time when a sizeable percentage of households are challenged due to inflationary pressures on disposable income. The bank grew its retail savings and current account deposits by 23 per cent and five per cent year-to-date, respectively.
The bank’s Group Chief Financial Officer, Ugo Nwaghodoh, said the bank had a strong start in the year, despite extended downturn in Nigeria and their profit after tax of N42bn translates to 18.2 per cent return on average equity, which is broadly in line with their 2017 full-year guidance.
He further said that the bank’s African affiliates (ex-Nigeria) contributed 32 per cent of the group’s earnings, leveraging digital offerings to gain market share across the different markets.
Reflecting a strong capacity for internal capital generation, the group’s shareholders’ fund grew by eight per cent to N483.1bn, while it delivered an annualised 18.2 per cent return on average equity and a Short-term dividend of N0.20 per share.