By Peter Egwuatu
Shareholders of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, GTB, yesterday, moved against the proposed plan to elongate the existence of Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, AMCON, from the initial 10 years plan as stated by the Act establishing it, saying it has outlived its usefulness.
The shareholders equally commended GTBank management for the efficiency in curtailing cost as well as its drive in growing deposit base, which resulted to increase in the bank’s Profit Before Tax, PBT, to N200.24 billion for the financial year 2017, from N165.1 billion in 2016.
“We will resist every plan by AMCON to elongate its existence. We are begging on the National Assembly not to consider any plan by AMCON to increase its lifespan. How can AMCON continue to impose huge fine on corporates that are trying to survive given the harsh operating environment. These fines affect the returns that these companies would have reported. We also call on corporate entities to fight against the plan by AMCON to increase its lifespan,” they stated.
Addressing shareholders, Managing Director/CEO of GTBank, Mr. Segun Agbaje, said: “2017 was a pivotal year for the bank. We delivered a strong result in a challenging environment; achieving record growth in earnings, carefully managing cost margins and leveraging our digital-first customer-centric strategy to deliver world-class services that are simple, cheap and easily accessible.” He further stated: “The result demonstrates the fundamental strength of our franchise as well as the progress we are making in transforming our organization into a platform on which our customers could build their businesses, connect with their consumers and access all the resources that they need to.”
A review of the results shows positive performance across major financial indices, reaffirming the bank’s position as one of the most profitable.
Gross earnings for the year grew by 1.1% to N419.2 billion in 2017 from N414.6 billion reported in 2016, driven primarily by growth in interest income as well as e-payment revenues.
Profit before tax stood at N200.2 billion, representing a growth of 21.3% over N165.1 billion recorded in 2016. The bank’s loan book dipped by 8.9% from N1.590 trillion recorded as at December 2016 to N1.449 trillion in 2017, while customers deposits increased by 3.8% to N2.062trillion from N1.986trillion in 2016.