By Goddy Egene
Union Bank of Nigeria Plc has recorded gross earnings of N118.8 billion for the nine months ended September 30, 2020, indicating a six per cent growth from N111.9 billion posted in the corresponding period of 2019.
Net interest income before impairment grew by 15 per cent N41.7 billion from N36.4 billion in 2019 driven by increase in earnings assets and lower interest expense.
Non-interest income rose 23 per cent to N33.4 billion from N27.1 billion supported by increased trading income and asset revaluation gains. Profit before tax rose two per cent from N15.5 billion to N15.9 billion in 2019.
Gross loans rose 14 per cent to N678 billion, compared with N595.3 billion in 2019, while customer deposits grew faster by 28 per cent to N1.1 trillion, up from N886.3 billion reflecting gains on the bank’s investments in customer-led products and digital channels.
Commenting on the results, Chief Executive Officer of Union Bank, Emeka Emuwa, said: “Notwithstanding the realities of a tougher operating environment arising from the ripple effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the bank delivered a six per cent growth in gross earnings from N111.9 billion in nine months to N118.8 billion in nine months 2020.
“We reached a major milestone as our customer deposits crossed the N1 trillion mark this quarter, growing by 28 per cent to N1.1 trillion compared to N886.3 billion at the end of 2019. This reflects increasing customer loyalty and our intense retail drive. Our customer acquisition strategy has been reinforced by the versatility of our digital platforms and channels which continue to drive customer satisfaction.”
Also speaking on the numbers, Chief Financial Officer, Union Bank, Joe Mbulu said: “Union Bank’s nine-month results reflect the strength and resilience of the business. Our PBT grew by two per cent to N15.9 billion, from N15.5 billion in the previous period. Our operating expenses were relatively flat year-on-year at N53.4 billion, compared to N53.2 billion in 9M 2019 despite inflationary pressures on cost and higher regulatory costs. This reflects continuing focus on cost management.
“Our asset quality continues to improve with non-performing loans (NPLs) down to 3.6 per cent from 5.8 per cent as at December 2019, supported by ongoing efforts to diversify our loan book to include viable businesses and households. Our Capital Adequacy Ratio remains robust at 19.5 per cent, well above the regulatory threshold.
With the $40 million (USD) financing secured from the International Finance Corporation for on-lending to trade finance customers, we are continuing to expand our funding engagements with DFIs to support our strategic business initiatives.
For the rest of the year, we remain focused on our business priorities in the face of the Covid-19 challenge and will continue to leverage increasing customer loyalty, stronger digital platforms and channels as well as solid risk management structure to deliver on our objectives.”