…declares 25k interim dividend
By Paeter Egwuatu
ACCESS Bank Group has recorded a Profit Before Tax, PBT, of N74.1 billion for the half year 2019, HI’19, the first financial result post-merger, representing a 62 percent increase from N45.8 billion recorded during the same period in 2018, HI’18, pre-merger.
According to the results released to the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, last weekend, the Bank recorded a Gross Earnings of N324.4 billion, up 28 percent from N253.0 billion in the corresponding period of H1’18.
The growth in gross earnings was driven by 46 percent increase in interest income on the back of continued growth in the Bank’s core business and 22 percent non-interest income underlined by strong recoveries.
Similarly, the Bank posted 34 percent growth in Operating Income to N202.3 billion from N151.4 billion in 2018. Total Asset was up 31 percent at N6.48trillion as at June 2019 in comparison to N4.95 trillion in December 2018.
Access Bank’s Capital Adequacy Ratio, CAR, remained solid at 20.8 per cent, well above the regulatory minimum.
Commenting on the result, Group Managing Director/CEO, Herbert Wigwe said: “Access Bank’s performance in the first half of the year reflects a sustainable business model coupled with effective execution as we make solid gains towards the achievement of our strategic goals.”
Following the release of the half year results, the Bank also declared an interim dividend of 25k to its shareholders.
“Our focus on retail gained momentum during the period, as continued investments in our channels platform resulted in a 29 per cent contribution to gross fee and commission income, up 92 per cent from the corresponding period in 2018. The strong retail contribution demonstrates the effectiveness of our continued drive around low-cost deposits, on the back of an innovative digital platform.
Asset quality improved as guided, to 6.4 per cent on the bank of a robust risk management approach. This is expected to trend into the future as we strive to hit and surpass the standard we had built in the industry prior to the merger. Similarly, liquidity ratio improved year on year to 49.7 per cent, reflecting deliberate steps to optimise our balance sheet in order to ensure the group’s liquidity position remains robust.
“Going into the second half of the year, our focus is on consolidating momentum and driving access to financial inclusion through our various agency initiatives. Additionally, we will remain disciplined in our efforts to deliver enhanced shareholder value, as we continue to realise the synergies from our newly expanded franchise” he noted.”