United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc has posted 32 per cent growth in profit before tax in its audited result for the year ended December 31, 2016. Precisely, the group posted N91 billion in profit before tax, against N68 billion achieved in the corresponding period of 2015.
Also, the bank’s profit after tax grew by 21 per cent to N72 billion, from N60 billion recorded in the previous year. The improved performance, according to the bank, was due to considerable growth in both interest and non-interest income.
Furthermore, the bank explained that its subsidiaries outside the country are increasingly gaining market share across the 18 African countries, thus reinforcing the strong and impressive subsidiary contribution to the group, estimated at one-third of profit in 2016, from less than a quarter in 2015 financial year.
The bank achieved 22 per cent growth in gross earnings to N384 from N315 billion recorded at the end of the 2015 financial year. “In addition to the opportunities in the high yield government securities, rising adoption of electronic banking channels and strong franchise, UBA was able to leverage its expansive geographical footprint in recording this impressive earnings growth, the bank said in a statement.
The directors of the bank are proposing a final dividend of 55 kobo, subject to the approval of shareholders. The Bank had earlier paid an interim dividend of 20 kobo to shareholders, bringing the total dividend for the 2016 financial year to N0.75 kobo,
The Group Managing Director of the bank, Kennedy Uzoka, expressed satisfaction on the performance of the bank despite the macroeconomic challenges witnessed in a number of countries where UBA operates.
“Considering the operating environment in 2016, I am very pleased with our profitability in the year; an impressive 32 per cent growth in profit before tax to N91 billion-whilst we have also focused keenly on operational efficiencies, illustrated by the reduction in our cost-to-income ratio.”
Uzoka expressed optimism that as the bank’s pan-African operations increasingly gain footprint across its chosen markets, the outlook remains positive. “As we further our customer First Philosophy, we are approaching 2017 with real optimism, especially with the outlook remaining positive in many of our markets, where we benefit from our increasingly diverse revenue streams.
“We reiterate our pledge to delivering excellent service to our customers, as we remain committed to creating superior and sustainable return for our shareholders.” The Chief Financial Officer of the bank, Ugo Nwaghodoh, said the bank extracted efficiency gains across its operations to boost profitability.
He stated that the bank has seen significant improvement in key areas across all business lines, including a decent improvement in the net interest margin. “Our performance in 2016 reflects the strong potential and resilience of the business. We grew top and bottom lines by 22 per cent and 32 per cent respectively, despite the stagflation in Nigeria, our core market,” the CFO noted.