UBA, Access Holdings, Others Gross Earnings Up 25% in Q1 to N1.54trn

Nume Ekeghe

Despite the challenging operating environment, a total of 13 Nigerian banks grew their gross earnings by 25 per cent in the first quarter (Q1) ended March 31, 2022, THISDAY findings revealed.  

The 13 that is made up of 5 Tier-1 and 8 Tier-2 banks reported N1.54 trillion gross earnings in Q1 2022, representing an increase of 25 per cent over the N1.23 trillion reported in Q1 2021.

With the increase in gross earnings among improved financial parameters, the PBT of the 13 banks reached N370.25 billion in Q1 2022, representing an increase of 19 per cent over N312.5billion earned in Q1 2021.

The 13 banks are; Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI), Access Holdings Plc, Zenith Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA). FBN Holdings Plc, and Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc. 

Others are; Fidelity Bank Plc, Stanbic IBTC Holdings, FCMB Group Plc, Union Bank for Nigeria Plc, Sterling Bank Plc, Wema Bank Plc and Unity Bank Plc. 

Operating as a pan-African bank, ETI and Access Holdings expanded gross earnings in the period under review as the year commenced with great expectations for growth globally on the back of the recovery achieved in 2021.

ETI’s reported 14.5 per cent increase in gross earnings to N246.4billion in Q1 2022 from N215.28billion reported in Q1 2021, while its PBT grew by 29 per cent to N52.07billion in Q1 2022 from N40.34billion reported in Q1 2021. 

Also, Access Holdings reported n Access Holdings N295.7billion gross earnings in Q1 2022, representing an increase of 33.13 per cent from N222.14billion in Q1 2021 that impacted on PBT that gained 8.5 per cent to N65.13billion in Q1 2022 from N60.05billion reported in Q1 2021.

Other Tier-1 banks with stronger gross earnings growth include Zenith Bank with 21.7 per cent increase in gross earnings to N191.5billion in 2022 from N157.31billion in 2021; UBA grew its gross earnings by 18.34 per cent to N183.9billion in Q1 2022 from N155.4billion in Q1 2021; FBN Holdings reported N180.5billion gross earnings in Q1 2022, representing an increase of 32.14 per cent from N136.6billion reported in Q1 2021 and GTCO announced N119.59billion in gross earnings, representing an increase of 13 per cent from N106.2billion reported in Q1 2021. 

Commenting, Zenith Bank said the double-digit growth in the topline also spurred its bottom line as the Group recorded an 11 per cent increase in profit before tax, growing from N61 billion in Q1 2021 to N68 billion in Q1 2022. 

“Topline growth was mainly driven by the growth in interest income, fees on electronic products and trading income,” Zenith bank explained in a statement. 

For UBA, the pan-African bank’s Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mr Kennedy Uzoka explained that despite the myriad of economic challenges on the global front which shaped the first three months of the year, the bank’s business model continued to show resilience.

“These challenges among others, he noted include the ongoing crisis between Russia and Ukraine that has resulted in a huge supply shock, pushing up commodity prices; and the hike in the interest rates in most advanced countries aimed at tackling spiralling inflation, sparking capital flow reversal from emerging and frontier markets.”

Uzoka added that, “Notwithstanding these developments, we were able to leverage gains from our large customer base and vast geographical spread to bolster earnings. 

“We recorded double-digit growth of 18 percent in our gross earnings to N183.9 billion, with our Nigerian operation raking in 65 percent of the revenue while our operations in other countries accounted for the remainder, showing the diversity in our operations.”

Also, most Tier-2 banks grew gross earnings in the period under review that played critical impact on profit before tax declared.  

On its part, Fidelity bank reported N71.33billion in gross earnings in Q1 2022, representing an increase of 29.4 per cent from N55.12billion in Q1 2021 to close the period under review with N10.3billion profit before tax as against N10.13billion reported in prior period.

According to the MD/CEO of Fidelity Bank, Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe, the increase in gross earnings was driven by 44.1per cent  YoY (N19.0billion) growth in total interest and similar income which was attributable to the expansion in earning assets, improved yields on government securities and increased average lending rate. 

She added, “non-interest revenue dropped by N2.8billion largely due to N6.0billion decline in FX income, however, key fees and commission lines (Digital Income | Account Maintenance Charge | Trade Income | Collections etc.) showed strong double-digit growth in line with increased customer transactions.”

Following Fidelity Bank with stronger gross earnings among the Tier-2 banks is Stanbic IBTC Holdings that reported N67.23billion gross earnings in Q1 2022 from N45.52billion reported in Q1 2021. 

Others are FCMB Group with N58.31billion gross earnings in Q1 2022 from N43.54billion in Q1 2021, while Union Bank for Nigeria reported N43.42billion in Q1 2022 from N36.79billion reported in Q1 2021.

Sterling Bank reported N38.05 billion gross earnings in Q1 2022 from N30.89billion; Wema Bank closed Q1 2022 with N30.64billion gross earnings in Q1 2022 from N19.47billion in Q1 2021 and Unity Bank grew its gross earnings by 18.25 per cent to N13.6billion in Q1 022 from N11.5billion in Q1 2021. 

Sterling Bank explained that gross earnings growth was primarily due to a 43.3per cent increase in operating income driven by a 17.5per cent growth in net interest income and a 40.5per cent increase in fees & commission.

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