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Access Bank Records Impressive Revenue Growth In 2022

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Disability inclusion: Access Holdings, NBDN advocate for more inclusiveness

Access Bank Records Impressive Revenue Growth In 2022

 

Leading financial institution, Access Bank Plc. (Access Holdings Plc.) has registered the strongest growth in revenue in 10years at almost 42 percent to hit gross income of N1.38 trillion, making it the first banking institution in Nigeria to hit and cross the N1 trillion mark in gross earnings.

 

The bank’s 10-year record growth in revenue is, however, followed by the first profit drop in five years with after-tax profit down by 5 percent to N152 billion. This reflects a major loss of profit margin from 16.4 percent in 2021 to 9 percent in 2022 – the lowest for the bank in more than a decade.

 

The bank holding company’s audited financial report for the year ended December 2022, shows that the increase in gross earnings represents as much as N416 billion added to the large revenue pool of the group in the year. However, no part of the increase reached the bottom line.

 

A disparity in growth between revenue and profit observed at the end of the third quarter (Q3) worsened at full year. Quarterly profit numbers dropped from N48 billion in Q3 to N15 billion in the final quarter – the lowest in the year. At the same time, quarterly revenue rose from N316 billion to N472 billion over the same period.

 

Total expenses grew ahead of the revenue increase and undermined the ability to convert revenue into profit, leading to the divergence in revenue and profit in the year. The challenge to the bank in the year was located in its lending field where interest expenses and loans loss charges consumed far more than the increase in interest earnings.

 

While the bank grew interest income by 37.5 percent to N827.5 billion at the end of the year – an increase of N226 billion, interest expenses rose by 55.8 percent to N467.8 billion in the year, claiming over 74 percent of the increase in interest earnings.

 

Worse than that, is an upsurge in net credit losses that registered a high jump of 137.7 percent in the year, from N83.2 billion in 2021 to N197.8 billion at the end of 2022. Credit losses have swelled for the bank for the fourth straight year, summing up to about N364 billion thrown off revenue in four years to 2022.

 

The two major cost increases consumed far more than all the increase of N226 billion in interest income in the year and slashed net interest income after loan impairment charges by 25.8 percent to N161.8 billion.

 

Rapid expansion of the loan book that the bank has seen in the past five years was sustained in 2022 with net customer lending position advancing by a clear N1 trillion to N5.1 trillion at the end of the year. In five years to 2022, the bank’s net loans and advances to customers has jumped more than two and half times from less than N2 trillion in 2018.

 

The weakness in income net of loan loss expenses was largely remedied by strong gains in non-interest income, which was led by net gains in financial instruments that multiplied more than six times from N44.8 billion in 2021 to N281.3 billion at the end of 2022.

 

Also, net gains on hedging jumped from a slight loss to close at N19.7 billion over the same period. Fee and commission income equally grew by 24.3 percent to N197.6 billion in the year.

The gains in non-interest earnings were supported by a relative slowdown in operating expenses – which helped to temper the impact of the drop in net income on the bottom line. At N502.4 billion, total operating expenses grew by 35.4 percent, which is below the 42 percent increase in gross earnings.

 

The moderation enabled a decline in operating cost margin from 38.2 percent in 2021 to 36.2 percent at the end of 2022. This means the bank used a lower operating cost to generate the naira of its revenue in 2022 than in the prior financial year as well as any time in more than a decade.

 

The cost saving from operating expenses and the improvements in non-interest income provided the upside force that bridged the 25.8 percent drop in net income to achieve a moderate decline of 5 percent in after-tax profit in the year.

 

Highlights of the bank’s first quarter (Q1) earnings performance in the current financial year, show that the disparity between the growths in interest income and expenses is persisting but with a slowdown in credit losses, profit for the quarter has stretched out to N71.6 billion.

 

The directors have announced a final cash dividend of N1.30 per share, having paid an interim cash dividend of N20 kobo per share in the course of the financial year.

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Guaranty Trust HoldCo Proposes N500bn Share Offering

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Guaranty Trust HoldCo Proposes N500bn Share Offering

Guaranty Trust HoldCo Proposes N500bn Share Offering

Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTCO) Plc, said it has filed a preliminary ‘red herring’ prospectus with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to raise N500 billion.

The Company in a notice said the number of ordinary shares to be offered and the price range for the proposed offering have not yet been determined.
The notice said “this is issued in reliance on Rule 283 of the Rules & Regulations of SEC, Nigeria. The notice read in part, this does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities.

“Any offer, solicitation or offer to buy, or any sale of securities will be made only by a prospectus duly registered by the Securities and Exchange Commission, Nigeria (SEC) in accordance with the provisions of the Investments and Securities Act, No. 29, 2007 (the Act) and the rules and regulations of the SEC made pursuant to the Act (the SEC Rules).”

Stating the purpose of the proposed offering, the notice further said that, “the net proceeds of the proposed offering will be used for the growth and expansion of the GTCO Group’s businesses. Such planned growth and expansion will be effected through investments in technology infrastructure to fortify existing operations, the establishment of new subsidiaries and selective acquisitions of non-banking businesses; and the recapitalisation of Guaranty Trust Bank Limited.”

It added that “the proposed offering is structured as an institutional offering targeted at eligible investors and a retail offering within Nigeria and a private placing to persons reasonably believed to be qualified institutional buyers outside Nigeria (the international tranche).”

It noted that the proposed offering is anticipated to open by July, 2024, adding that the filing of the red herring prospectus was undertaken with a concurrent filing of a preliminary universal shelf registration statement.

“The universal shelf registration will permit GTCO to establish a multi-currency securities issuance programme (the Programme) to issue various types of securities, or any combination of such securities, in one or more offerings, from time to time, to raise proceeds in an aggregate amount of up to $750 million or equivalent amount in Nigerian naira) in the Nigerian/international capital markets during the validity period of the Programme.”

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Wema Bank concludes 1st tranche of capital raise programme

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Wema Bank concludes 1st tranche of capital raise programme

Wema Bank concludes 1st tranche of capital raise programme

 

Wema Bank, Nigeria’s foremost innovative bank and pioneer of Africa’s first fully digital bank, ALAT, has successfully concluded the first tranche of its recapitalisation exercise having secured all relevant regulatory approvals for the allotment of its N40bn Rights Issue which was initiated in December 2023.

In view of macroeconomic conditions, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in March 2024, launched a recapitalisation programme requiring commercial banks to raise fresh capital in alignment with the minimum requirement for their respective banking licenses, within a 24-month timeline spanning April 1, 2024, to March 31, 2026.

The goal of this recapitalisation programme is to simultaneously boost the Nigerian economy and strengthen the Nigerian financial services industry.

As a forward-thinking and pioneering bank, Wema Bank in December 2023 launched a N40bn Rights issue which has now been approved by the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). With this remarkable development, Wema Bank has now successfully raised N40bn of the N200bn minimum requirement laid down by the CBN.

In a statement made to the public by the Bank, Moruf Oseni, Wema Bank’s Managing Director and CEO, iterated the Bank’s resolve in retaining its Commercial Banking license with National Authorisation, adding that the N40bn Rights Issue is a step in that direction.

“We are delighted to announce the conclusion of the 1st tranche of our Capital Raise Programme, after obtaining the relevant approvals of all regulatory authorities. Our move to commence our Capital Raise Programme very early demonstrates our push for excellence and with a strong emphasis on our digital play, we are set to amass more successes in the coming months.”

“We were impressed by the vote of confidence given by our shareholders during the 1st Rights Issue exercise as our shares were fully subscribed. In addition, we obtained the approval of shareholders at our 2023 Annual General Meeting (AGM) to raise an additional N150billion to meet the capitalisation threshold set by the CBN. The process is expected to be completed within 12-18 months. We are committed to providing optimum returns for every stakeholder and the successful conclusion of this N40bn Rights Issue is a bold step in the right direction.”

In addition to the upward trend in the Bank’s financial performance and the success recorded so far in its recapitalisation exercise, Wema Bank’s corporate rating was recently upgraded to BBB+ by Pan African credit rating agency, Agusto and Co, and retained at BBB by international rating agency, Fitch.

Over the medium to long term, Wema Bank is positioned to dominate not only the digital Banking space but also the Nigerian financial services industry at large as it translates its industry leadership to significant market share.

Wema Bank is a leading financial services entity with banking operations across Nigeria, its leadership position in the digital banking space speaks to its aspirations to liberate Nigerian businesses and entrepreneurs by making digital platforms widely available.

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Zenith Bank confirms Sirika’s daughter owns a company linked to N1.4 billion Aviation contract

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Zenith Bank confirms Sirika’s daughter owns a company linked to N1.4 billion Aviation contract

Zenith Bank confirms Sirika’s daughter owns a company linked to N1.4 billion Aviation contract

A compliance officer from Zenith Bank Plc, Mishelia Arhyel, told the Federal Capital Territory High Court Abuja on Tuesday that former Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika’s daughter, Fatima, and son-in-law, Jalal Hamma, owned Al-Buraq Global Investment Ltd, a company the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) indicted in an aviation fraud suit.

Arhyel testified as EFCC’s second witness in the fraud-related charges instituted against Hadi Sirika and his daughter, Fatima, son-in-law, Jalal Hamma, and Al-Buraq Investment Ltd.

The defendants had been arraigned before Justice Sylvanus Oriji of the FCT High Court.

EFCC’s Case
The EFCC had indicted Hadi Sirika, in an alleged contract fraud involving his daughter and son-in-law as well as fraudulent practices associated with the Nigeria Air debacle.

Sirika was accused of allegedly using his position to unfairly benefit Tianaero Nigeria Limited and Al Buraq Global Investment Ltd; companies allegedly associated with his associate, daughter, and son-in-law.

He was said to have influenced the award of contracts for the Nigerian Air project and the Apron Extension at Katsina Airport to these companies.

The EFCC alleges that N1.4 billion was approved to Al-Buraq for the Apron Extension contract at Katsina Airport.

The defendants are accused of breach of trust and misuse of public office to the tune of over N2 billion naira in contravention of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act and the Penal Code Act.

But they all pleaded not guilty to the charges paving the way for the commencement of trial.

What transpired in court
Led in evidence by EFCC lead counsel, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), Arhyel, said his role as a compliance officer involves receiving correspondence from law enforcement agencies on behalf of Zenith Bank and forwarding the same to appropriate authorities as well as responding to inquiries.

He confirmed that sometime in February 2023, the bank received a letter from EFCC making inquiries regarding accounts statements on Al-Buraq, Jalal Hama and Fatima.

The prosecution counsel then tendered the bank statements of the defendants and it was admitted by the court unopposed by the defense legal team.

Speaking to the documents, Arhyel told Justice Oriji that Al-Buraq was registered on June 17, 2021, and the directors are Hamal Jalal, Sirika Fatima Hadi and Shinade Saratu.

According to the witness, the ex-minister’s daughter and in-law have significant control over Al-Buraq.

“Sirika Fatima Hadi is the secretary of the company.

“Persons in significant control of the company are Hamal Jalal and Sirika Fatima Hadi.

“The signatories are Saratu Muhammad, Fatima Hadi Sirika, and Jalal Hamal,” the witness told the court corroborating EFCC’s allegations.

Earlier in the proceedings, Azubuike Okorie, a former Special Assistant to the ex-Aviation Minister, Projects(2022-2023) said it was the frustration posed by the Nigerian Air Force and the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) that prevented the execution of the Kastina Airport extension contract.

Under cross-examination by the defense team led by Kanu Agabi (SAN), Okorie said the contract went through due process and had nothing to do with the competence and honesty of the contractor.

The witness claimed the relationship between Sirika, his family members and associates was not a factor considered in the contract awarded to Al-Buraq.

The court subsequently adjourned the trial to June 20, 2024.

Backstory
The EFCC had said its operatives arrested Abubakar Ahmad Sirika, the brother of Hadi Sirika, over an alleged contract fraud in the aviation ministry.

Abubakar was picked up by the anti-graft agency on Sunday, February 4, following an investigation in the Ministry of Aviation and Aerospace Development.

During his tenure as minister, Sirika faced allegations including conspiracy, abuse of office, diversion of public funds, contract inflation, criminal breach of trust, and money laundering totalling N8,069,176,864.

The commission had revealed that the funds in dispute related to four aviation contracts awarded by the former minister to a company called Engirios Nigeria Limited, which is owned by his younger brother.

The EFCC is empowered by law to track financial crimes.

Every accused person remains innocent until found guilty by a competent court.

Sirika served as aviation minister from 22 August 2019 to 29 May 2023.

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