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Wema Bank’s profit rises by 59 per cent in 2014


Segun Oloketuyi

Segun Oloketuyi

Wema Bank Plc has declared profit before tax of N3.1 billion, for the year ended December 31, 2014, representing 59 per cent increase, against N1.9 billion it recorded in the corresponding period of December 31, 2013.

The bank’s total assets also rose by 16 per cent to N382.6 billion in the period under review, compared to N330.9 billion recorded at the end of the financial year of 2013.
The financial institution made the disclosure during the presentation of its 2014 full year results on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange.

The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the bank, Segun Oloketuyi, said the bank continues to record year on year improvement in its financial performance, as it has improved significantly on its profitability and customer growth despite shrinking margins and intense competition.

According to him, the feat was attributable to the continued execution of the bank’s three-year growth strategy called Project LEAP.

He said the 2014 financial year, which recorded a growth in several indices on the same capital base, indicated improved efficiency and better utilization of resources.
“The bank also recorded a 19 per cent growth in customer deposit volumes largely from the Commercial and Retail space despite the tightening government regulation on cash-reserve. Our loans and advances to customers increased by 51 per cent, as the Bank was able to lend more to productive sectors of the economy. In addition, the Bank has continued to ensure strong Risk Management, and this is evidenced by the level of non-performing loans ratio at 2.5 per cent.

“The ‘New Wema Bank’ that has now emerged is a stronger, more efficient, resilient and customer-focused organization with a robust risk management and corporate governance structure. The Bank has realigned its business focus to concentrate on its key area of strength – Retail Banking.

“We have used technology to our advantage, deploying in-branch solutions, mobile and internet banking applications and other social media tools to drive customer patronage and reduce our cost to serve. We have continued to contain our operating expenses despite the increased inflationary environment while at the same time improving on our fee-based income lines.

“In this year that we turn 70 as the premier indigenous financial institution in Nigeria, we are glad to unveil a “NEW” Wema Bank that responds faster and better to customers’ needs whilst adapting more quickly to the ever-changing dynamics of the industry. We remain firmly committed to being the financial institution of choice in Nigeria whilst ensuring that we consistently deliver superior returns to all stakeholders.

“We are stepping further to becoming one of the most efficient mid-tier banks in Nigeria. We are confident that we will sustain the momentum and improve on our profitability and volume growth in 2015,” he said.

Meanwhile, gross loans and advances to customers grew by 51 per cent to N149.3 billion, against N98.6 billion in 2013, while deposits rose by 19 per cent to N258.9 billion compared to N217.7 billion in 2013.

Net interest income rose to N18.5 billion, representing 31 per cent increase from N13.8 billion December 2013, with profit after tax at N2.37 billion in the period under review, an increase of 48 per cent, against N1.59 billion in 2013.

Further analysis showed that Capital Adequacy Ratio stood at 18.22 per cent, against 27 per cent in 2013; loan to deposit ratio, 57.65 per cent compared to 45.29 per cent in 2013; non-performing loan ratio, 2.5 per cent, against 3.87 per cent in 2013; cost to income ratio, 87.72 per cent compared to 95.15 per cent in 2013; net interest margin, 5.48 per cent compared to per cent7.04 in 2013; earnings per share, six kobo compared to eight kobo in 2013; and return on equity, 5.42 per cent against 3.86 per cent in 2013.

The bank, during the period under review, launched Visa Credit card offerings, robust and vibrant website, various product offerings aimed at boosting financial inclusion and support for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises’ growth, financed Nigeria’s first indigenous mobile phone manufacturing factory and introduced in-branch POS services for fast-tracking transactions.

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