Nigeria’s United Bank for Africa (UBA) has announced a 33.4 percent year-on-year growth in its half year profit before tax to N76.2 billion as at June 2021, from the N57.1 billion recorded in the same period of 2020.
This translated to an annualised Return on Average Equity (RoAE) of 17.5 percent as against 14.4 percent a year earlier, according to the bank in a statement.
This feat was recorded despite the challenging business and economic environment that emerged from the slow pace of activities following the global lockdown occasioned by the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a regulatory filing with the Nigerian Exchange Limited, the banking group’s profit after tax stood at N60.6 billion, representing a significant increase of 36.3 percent, compared with the N44.4 billion recorded in the half year of 2020.
Its gross earnings grew by five percent to N316 billion, from the N300.6 billion recorded as at June 2020.
The group total assets also crossed the N8 trillion mark as it increased to N8.3 trillion, up from N7.7 trillion at the end of the 2020 financial year.
Its customer deposit also crossed the N6 trillion mark, growing by 7.4 percent to N6.1 trillion in the period under review, compared with N5.7 trillion as of December 2020.
Shareholders’ Funds remained robust at N752.5 billion, up from N724.1 billion in December 2020, reflecting its strong capacity for internal capital generation.
Consequently, the bank directors have recommeded an interim dividend of 20 kobo per share for every ordinary share of 50 kobo each, held by its shareholders.
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In his comment on the results, UBA’s Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Kennedy Uzoka, expressed delight over the bank’s performance in the first half of the year.
“This has been a strong first half for us, as global economic recovery exceeded expectations, creating a positive rub-off on consumer and corporate confidence, savings and investment activities.
“We saw this positively impact our business, as we continued to leverage our key strategic levers – People, Process and Technology, and our Customer first philosophy, to revolutionise customer experience at UBA,” Uzoka said.
He added that the bank’s investment in the Rest of Africa (excluding Nigeria) continues to yield good results for the group.
“The benefits of pan-African business diversification accruing to the Group is once again evident, with gross earnings and interest income growth of 5.1 percent and 8.3 percent respectively, despite the low yield environment in our largest market, Nigeria.
“We are making remarkable progress on our strategy that is progressively positioning UBA as the bank of choice on the continent, driven by our emphasis on tech-led innovation and best customer experience,” Uzoka added.
The bank, he said recognises the far-reaching effects of the pandemic on businesses globally, and remains focused on its promise to always provide our customers with the best banking experiences possible.
“Our first half 2021 (H1 2021) performance reflects our progressive efforts in building on the strong momentum that we started the year with.
“As a purpose-driven organisation, we remain resolute in our drive for sustained growth in customer acquisition, transaction volumes and balance sheet, as we consolidate our ‘Africa’s Global Bank’ market position in the years ahead, uplifting livelihoods across the continent,” Uzoka explained.