Union Bank Plc said its Profit Before Tax (PBT) went up by 15 per cent to N2.6 billion as against the N5.2billion in the first quarter ended March 31, 2020.
In its unaudited financial statements for the quarter ended March 31 2020, the bank also noted that Gross earnings: grew 18per cent to ₦42.6billion, ₦36.1billion in the first quarter of 2019, which was driven by an increase in earning assets.
Also, the bank’s Interest income: up 18per cent to ₦29.7billion, against the ₦25.2billion in the first quarter of 2019.
Net interest income before impairment was up by 38per cent to ₦14.8billion, against the ₦10.8billion in the first 2019,; driven by the growth in treasury assets.
Also the bank’s Non-interest income was up by 18per cent to ₦12.9bn, ₦10.9billion in the first quarter of 2019 which was driven by robust trading income, growth in e-business and revaluation gains.
Net operating income was also up by 7 percent to ₦24.2billion (₦22.7bn in first quarter of 2019), while Operating expenses: slightly up 3per cent to ₦18.0billion (₦17.1bn in the second quarter of 2019).
Commenting on the results, Chief Executive Officer of the bank, Emeka Emuwa said: “Coming off a strong 2019, we maintained focus on executing our strategic priorities in Q1 2020, delivering double-digit growth across all our major income lines.
“Profit Before Tax (PBT) grew by 19% to ₦6.2bn from ₦5.2bn in Q1 2019. Our Gross Earnings are also up by 18% to ₦42.6billion from ₦36.1billion in the first quarter of 2019. Our platforms and channels continue to drive our performance as Non-Interest Income increased by 18 percent from ₦10.9billion in the first quarter of 2019 to ₦12.9billion for the period with e-business fees contributing ₦2.1billion, a 71 percent growth compared to first quarter of 2019.
“The current COVID-19 pandemic presents daunting challenges for the global economy and consequently Nigeria and our business. Our focus in the short term is on ensuring business continuity through our strong operational risk framework; ensuring the health and well-being of our employees by adopting stringent health and safety protocols at our operating branches and offices; and supporting our customers through the crisis.
“We have reinforced our digital platforms to continue delivering value and convenience to our customers while aligning our focus areas to where opportunities emerge during and post COVID-19. We will continue to support the government, private entities and our communities in the fight against COVID-19,” he said.
Speaking on the first quarter 2020 numbers, Chief Financial Officer, Joe Mbulu said:“Headline numbers delivered 19per cent growth in Profit Before Tax to ₦6.2billion compared to ₦5.2billion in the first quarter of 2019.
He said, the 18per cent YoY growth in Non-Interest Income was driven by stronger trading income of ₦5billion compared to ₦2.2billion in first quarter of 2019, e-business income of ₦2.1bn compared to ₦1.2billion in first quarter of 2019 and revaluation gains of ₦2.7billion compared to ₦0.1billion in the same period last year.
‘Our operational efficiency also improved with Cost-Income Ratio declining YoY to 74.3per cent from 76.9per cent in the first quarter of 2019 as our cost optimisation programme continues to yield results. We have also kept NPL ratios flat currently at 5.9per cent compared to 5.8per cent as at December 2019.
“While the current COVID-19 pandemic has dimmed the global economy outlook for the year, we will leverage our strong capital position with Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) at 19.9per cent and our solid risk management framework towards delivery of our 2020 objectives, ” he said.
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