Ecobank Transnational Incorporated Plc (ETI) has started reaping the benefits of new strategies it put in place to reposition the pan-African financial institution as it posted highly improved results for the 2018 financial year.
ETI recorded a gross earnings of N773.338 billion for the year ended December 31, 2018, compared with N763.634 billion in 2017. Impairment charges fell by 35 per cent from N125.893 billion in 2017, to N82.044 billion, while operating expenses rose marginally from N347 billion to N349 billion. As a result, profit before tax (PBT) jumped by 53 per cent from N88.309 billion to N136.35 billion, while profit after tax (PAT) grew by 46 per cent from N69.701 billion to N101.919 billion in 2018. Loans and advances rose to N3.339 trillion from N2.836 trillion, while customers’ deposit appreciated from N4.652 trillion to N5.803 trillion. Total assets stood at N8.224 trillion in 2018, up 20 per cent from N6.864 trillion in 2017.
Commenting on the results, the Group Chief Executive Officer, ETI, Mr. Ade Adeyemi said: “Our financial performance in 2018 was remarkable in many ways and reflected the meaningful and significant progress that we have made against the priorities that we set in our ‘Roadmap to Leadership’ strategy. We delivered a 51 per cent growth in PBT and generated a return on tangible equity of 21 per cent. Our cost-of-risk of 2.4 per cent was an improvement on 2017 and demonstrated the progress that we have made addressing credit quality issues and enhancing internal control processes.
“In Francophone and Anglophone West Africa regions we delivered sustainable growth and value for shareholders. While in Nigeria, and the Central, Eastern and Southern Africa, regions we are spurred on by the gradual progress being made. Our businesses continued to serve customers diligently and with purpose and all delivered profit growth in 2018, with Commercial Bank overturning the loss before tax made in 2017.”
According to him, ETI continued to invest in the technology platforms to accelerate its shift from ‘physical’ to ‘digital’ and it is supporting its customers with digitally innovative products to enrich their engagements with Ecobank.
“ To meet a key goal of expanding financial services to the unbanked, we have increased the number of Xpress Points, our agency network, to about 14,000 and we plan to grow this number. Our cash management and trade finance products, such as, Omni and e-Trade, are providing our customers with the convenience and efficiency of executing their cross-border transactions across Africa.”