BY EMEKA EJERE
Union Bank Plc, has reported N121.8bn gross earnings for the third quarter ended 30th September, 2021, representing 3% increase from N118.8bn recorded in the same period of 2020.
According to its unaudited financial statements filed at the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) on Thursday, the lender’s non-interest income rose by 26% to N42bn from N33.4bn in the corresponding period last year. This, according to the statement, was supported by growth in fees and commission from e-business, credit and trade transactions as well as debt recoveries.
Profit before tax (PAT) was, however, relatively flat at N16bn compared to 15.9bn it was in 2020, even as net operating income after impairments increased by 3% to N71.2bn from 69.3bn, driven by stronger non-interest income.
Further look at the performance highlights shows that customer deposits went up to N1.3tr, representing 14% rise from 1.1tr in Dec 2020,, a reflection of gains from the bank’s marketing drive for low-cost deposits and deepened customer loyalty
Operating expenses was N55.2bn, 3% more than N53.4bn, reflecting higher non-discretionary regulatory costs as well as depreciation and amortisation costs from technology spend, just as gross loans: amounted to N855.7bn, 16% higher than 736.7bn in Dec 2020, reflecting increased lending to growth sectors of the economy.
The chief executive officer, Mr. Emeka Okonkwo, said:
“We continue to demonstrate the resilience of our business despite the volatility in the macro-economic environment, growing our gross earnings by 3% and delivering stable Profit Before Tax of ₦16 billion. This stability is underpinned by our strategic focus on deepening our customer engagements and meeting their needs as we grow our core business.
“Consequently, our deposit base is up 14% to ₦1.3 trillion, and our loan book has expanded by 16% to ₦855.7 billion driven by our compelling campaigns, new product offerings and effective sales channels. We have also achieved stronger transaction volumes across our businesses and channels, driving growth in fees and commissions, while we ensure robust cost controls.
“As we approach the end of the year, we are focused on building on our efficiency and optimising our core business while deepening our relationships with customers.”
The chief financial officer, Joe Mbulu said:
“We are focused on executing our plans for revenue diversification, driving strong growth in transaction volumes while we continue our strong debt recovery initiatives. These are mitigating the on-going impact of relatively low risk asset margins.
“During the period, non-interest income increased by 26% to ₦42 billion, driven by stronger net fee and commissions which gained 44% to ₦10.3 billion from ₦7.2 billion and recoveries which grew by 163% to ₦13 billion from ₦4.9 billion.
“We also maintained very strong control over our expenses, which grew by 3.3%, well below the rate of inflation as we continue to realise the benefits of our cost efficiency culture and mindset.”