Ugo Aliogo

Accion Microfinance Bank grew its total loan portfolio in 2017 by 24.4 per cent, from N6.12 billion in December 2016 to N7.27 billion as of last December.

This is just as the bank unveiled *572# as its new USSD code for online banking platform.

Speaking at the annual general meeting (AGM) of the bank in Lagos at theweekend, the Chairman, Accion Microfinance Bank, Patrick Akinwuntan stated that the total amount of loans disbursed grew by 23 per cent, from N15.58 billion in 2016 to N19.13 billion in 2017, adding that its account base increased by 15 per cent from 245,094 in 2016 to 282,057 accounts in December 2017, while the number of savers grew by 15.6 per cent from 144,284 in 2016 to 166,795 in December 2017.

Akinwuntan further stated that the bank grew its profit after tax by 50 per cent to close the year under review at N809 million, noting that the return on equity was 20 per cent. This, he said was a demonstration of its effective use of the capital availed by their shareholders.

Accion Microfinance Chair added that shareholders’ funds grew to N3.19 billion in 2017, from N3.3 billion the previous year, representing a growth of 16 per cent.

“Our capital position also continues to grow from strength to strength with a total capital adequacy ratio of 45 per centcompared to the regulatory requirement of 10 per cent.”

According to him, “Globally customer preferences are rapidly changing, and this demands that we continue to invest fully in leveraging technology to reach very Nigerian with our service in an efficient manner.

“We are upgrading our core banking system to a more robust and versatile version to enable product cross-selling and delivery through multiple digital channel available to our customers.

“In order to ensure compliance with all key external legislation, we have scaled up the capacity and capacity in our risk and compliance function that provides oversight and guidance on all compliance matters.

“The unveiling of the USSD code for online banking is aimed at serving the customers better.

“The code allows the customers to have access to a variety of activities such as opening of account, transfer of funds, payment of bills, buying of airtime, applying of loans, checking of account balance and others.”