SHAREHOLDERS of FBN Holdings Plc on Thursday commended the performance of the bank despite the challenging environment.
The shareholders also approved the 10 kobo dividend per share recommended for the year ended December 31, 2014.
Some of the shareholders, who spoke at the 3th Annual General Meeting, AGM of FBN Holdings in Lagos included the National Coordinator, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria, ISAN, Sir Sunny Nwosu and Mr. Boniface Okezie, president, Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria, PSAN.
They encouraged the management of the bank to maintain its adherence to good corporate governance that partly led to the impressive 2014 results.
President, Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria, PSAN, Mr. Boniface Okezie while speaking at the event, commended the bank for the dividend declared in spite of the unfriendly environment.
Okezie also lauded the bank’s performance during the period, in spite of the stringent regulatory environment, saying that the tempo should be maintained in the years ahead.
He said that the bank should continue to maintain high level of corporate governance in all its operations to avoid unnecessary penalties.
Also, Mr. Nona Awoh, a shareholder, called on the bank’s management to work out the strategies aimed at reducing the bank’s unclaimed dividend figures.
Speaking on the performance, the group Chairman , Dr. Oba Otudeko, CFR stated that profit FBN Holdings Plc earned N126.8bn in the first quarter of 2015, indicating a 23.5 per cent increase on the N102.6bn it reported as gross earnings for the same quarter of 2014.
The group’s unaudited results for the quarter ended March 31, 2015 showed that it made a profit after tax of N26.9bn in the quarter, – 8.7 per cent higher than the N24.8bn it realised in the corresponding period of last year, while its profit after tax rose by 4.9 per cent to N22.6bn from N21.6bn. In terms of balance sheet growth, he said its total assets rose by 3.9 per cent from N4.3tn on December 31, 2014 to N4.5tn in the quarter under review, while customer loans and advances edged lower by 2.6 per cent from N2.2tn at the end of December last year to N2.1tn as of March 31, 2015.
Customer deposits were up by 5.1 per cent year-to-date, from N3.1tn to N3.2tn. According to FBN Holdings, the gross earnings growth was aided by a strong year-on-year growth of 51.2 per cent in non-interest income to N29.3bn.
The Group Chief Executive Officer, FBN Holdings, Bello Maccido explained that by virtue of bank’s performance, had sustained its leading position in the financial services industry.
“Gross earnings were further supported by a 17.0 per cent y-o-y increase in interest income to N95.3bn. Negatively affecting gross earnings was the impact of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s implementation of the revised COT charges and the sterilisation of the loanable funds in reserve requirements.”
“In spite of the volatile political and macroeconomic environment that has characterised the first quarter, we returned a profit before tax of N26.9bn, a nine per cent increase over the same period in 2014,” he said. “Given this we are cautiously optimistic about the rest of the year, as the country and economy benefits from improving confidence, and remain focused on managing effectively the macroeconomic challenges.”
Maccido, who said that the group expected improved traction from investments committed in the prior year to diversify revenue streams and enhance profitability, promised that it would continue to build a resilient business and drive efficiencies towards delivering sustainable returns to its shareholders.
FBN Capital is the arrow-head for this business, with FBN Funds, FBN Trustees, FBN Securities and FBN Capital Asset Management as its subsidiaries. However, following the acquisition of a 100% equity interest in Kakawa Discount House by FBN Holdings Plc, the universe of products and services offered by the IBAM Group will expand further, along with the client base and the opportunity to deepen the relationship with existing clients. In addition, the acquisition will strengthen the Group’s corporate and institutional banking business, and increase the contribution from its non-bank subsidiaries.