Business Hilights
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Fidelity Bank delivers set of strong financial results, posts 94% growth in profits

Leading retail banking group, Fidelity Bank has further demonstrated resilience and financial management discipline with the performance it recorded from the just released results for the year ended December 31, 2017.

With 94 per cent rise in profit, the company has comfortably proposed to pay 11 kobo dividend to shareholders.

Details of the full year audited results released yesterday at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), shows impressive growth in all key indices. The performance capped a remarkable 2017FY for the bank which returned to the international capital markets and successfully issued a $400m Eurobond that was over-subscribed by over 200%

Gross Earnings grew by 18.3% to N179.9 bn from N152.0bn in 2016, whilst Profit After Tax (PAT) surged by 93.7% to N18.9bn compared with N9.7bn recorded in the previous year. Net Interest Income (NIM) increased by 15.4% to N71.5bn in 2017, Net Operating Income rose by 9.9% from N86.0bn to N78.3bn whilst Total Assets grew by 6.2% from N1.3trillion to N1.4 trillion in the period under review.

Details from other indices showed that Total Expenses declined by 2.3% to N65.7bn from N67.2bn whilst Liquidity Ratio stood at 35.9% compared with 33.2% in the previous year.

In his remarks, chief executive officer of the bank, Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo, expressed delight with the performance, and noted that the bank sustained its performance through disciplined balance sheet management, strategic cost reduction, increased focus on the corporate, commercial, SME segments and continued execution of its retail and digital banking strategy.

Okonkwo averred that “We are delighted at the results, which showed strong growth in key revenue lines, significant traction in our chosen business segments and a corresponding decline in our operating expenses despite the high inflationary environment”.

Continuing, he argued that the implementation of initiatives from its Business Process Review Project and the Bank’s digital focus, continued to impact positively on operational efficiency as “total operating expenses declined by 2.3% to N65.7 billion leading to the cost-income ratio dropping to 67.5% from 77.3% in the 2016FY. The combination of the strong net revenue growth of 9.9% to N7.7 billion and the 2.3% decline in total expenses which translated to cost savings of N1.5 billion resulted in our increased profitability”.

“Increased digitisation has resulted to over 25% of the Bank’s fee-based income as customers’ adoption of its mobile/internet platforms improved to 35% in the 2017FY and led to a 21.0% reduction in vault cash holding. Similarly, the Bank’s retail banking strategy continued to deliver good results. Savings Deposits grew by 15.2% to N178.6bn, accounting for 23.0% of total deposits from 19.5% in the 2016FY. This has improved the Bank’s low-cost deposits ratio to 77.0% of total deposits.

Business Hilights recalls that Fidelity Bank is a full-fledged commercial bank operating in Nigeria, with over 3.8 million customers who are serviced across its 240 business offices and various other digital banking channels.

Besides, the bank has in recent times won accolades as the Best SME Friendly Bank, Best in Mobile Banking and the Most Improved Corporate/Investment Bank among several industry awards and recognitions. The bank was also ranked the 4th Best Bank in the Retail Banking Segment in the 2017 Banking Industry Satisfaction Survey conducted by KPMG.

One of the strongholds of the bank includes corporate banking segment as well as Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

Currently, Fidelity Bank is rapidly implementing a digital based retail banking strategy which has resulted in an exponential growth in savings deposits over the last 3 years and a corresponding surge in customer enrollment on the bank’s flagship mobile/internet banking products.