Diamond Bank Plc expects to conclude the sale of its British unit before the end of the year and is going through a change of ownership, its chief executive said on Tuesday.
The mid-tier lender struck a deal with British industrialist Sanjeev Gupta earlier this year after selling its West African subsidiaries last year
The bank’s half-year 2018 pre-tax profit declined 69 per cent to N2.92 billion, hurting its shares, which fell a further 1.60 percent on Tuesday. Diamond Bank said it expected loan growth to return, growing five percent this year after credit declined in the first half by 3.6 per cent.
Weak economic growth hurt loan growth in Nigeria last year. However, as the economy improves the bank expects loans to grow especially as the central bank introduces liquidity to the banking sector targeting credit to manufacturers.
“The loan growth would come from corporate banking. With the turnaround in GDP we would begin to see opportunities in fast moving consumers good, manufacturing,” Reuters quoted the bank to have said during an analysts’ conference call.