United Bank for Africa Plc has grown its profit after tax (PAT) for the first quarter (Q1) ended March 31 by 21 per cent, to N28.665 billion, up from N23.736 billion in the corresponding period of 2018.
Details of the results showed that UBA ended the period with net interest income of N58.075 billion, compared with N53.55 billion, while net fee and commission income rose to N16.759 billion, from N14.996 billion in 2018. Profit before tax was N30.157 billion in 2019, as against N26.555 billion in 2018. PAT grew faster by 21 per cent to hit N28.665 billion, compared with N23.736 billion.
The Q1 results came on the heels of the annual general meeting(AGM) of the bank held in Lagos on Tuesday, where shareholders of the pan African bank hailed the N29.9 billion dividend recommended for the 2018 financial year.
With the growth recorded in Q1 bottom-line, there are expectations that a higher dividend would be paid at the end the current financial year.
The Chairman of UBA, Mr. Tony Elumelu had at the AGM expressed optimism about the policy environment in most African economies, where the financial institution operate, saying they expect diligent implementation of fiscal policies to help stimulate inclusive economic growth, ease macro pressures and lower the cost of doing business.
“I am very optimistic that we will sustain the strong growth trajectory, as we continue to gain market share across Africa, leveraging our core values of Enterprise, Excellence and Execution,” Elumelu said.
Also speaking, the Group Managing Director/CEO of UBA, Mr. Kennedy Uzoka, promised shareholders that the team remained poised to do more in the coming year. He said: “We are on a new cost optimisation journey and we are diligent in executing far-reaching cost-efficient initiatives, which will complement our revenue growth drive in moderating the cost-to-income ratio towards our desired target. Ultimately, we look forward to delivering superior returns to shareholders in the years ahead.”
According to him, the bank has the strong financial capacity backed by high capitalization (BASEL II capital ratio well above requirement) and strong liquidity.
“We have worked hard towards connecting Africa and the world through our presence in key African markets and major global financial centres such as New York, London and Paris. We are now well positioned to extract the immense synergy opportunities within our Group, with the ultimate objective of creating superior and sustainable wealth to shareholders,” Uzoka said.