FBN Holdings Plc has reported a growth of 31.7 per cent in its profit after tax (PAT) for the nine months ended September 30, 2020, raising the hope of investors for a robust dividend at the end of the financial year.
Details of the results showed that FBN Holdings recorded gross earnings of 325.279 billion, up from N324.152 billion, while net interest income stood at N192.737 billion compared with N203.53billion in 2019. Fee and commission income rose from N62.434 billion to N72.988 billion. Impairment charges rose from N28.46 billion to N46.675 billion.
Profit before tax improved from N54.469 billion to N63.280 billion, while PAT grew faster from N51.747 billion to N68.156 billion. Loans and advances expanded by 10.3 per cent from N2.607 trillion to N2.869 trillion, while customers’ deposits rose from N4.019 trillion to N4.630 trillion. FBN Holdings ended the period with total assets of N7.243 trillion, up from N6.204 trillion.
The impressive results recorded despite the COVID-19 pandemic did not come as surprise to some stakeholders as the Group Managing Director of FBN Holdings Plc,Mr. UK Eke, had said necessary steps had been put in place to ensure the bank mitigate the impact of the pandemic.
According to him, FBN Holdings continued to assess the impact not only on its income in the immediate but also medium-to-long-term impact on its customers and their ability to meet obligations.
“And in line with the commitment to supporting our customers and providing leadership in the financial services industry, we will continue to provide unfettered access to financial services to our customers and address their needs.
We are working in line with the guidance of the regulators including the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in providing access to funding as we seek to kick-start the economy and drive growth,” he said.
He assured stakeholders that overall, “the impact on our business has been broadly in line with our expectations, and our resilience, breadth of offerings, and investment in alternative channels have ensured that the Group is able to cushion the effect and thrive.”
Eke had also said the shares of FBN Holdings had been undervalued because the valuation does not reflect the growing fundamentals as evidenced by the return on equity which has continued to improve quarter-on-quarter.
“More fundamentally, the Group has begun to reap the dividend of its investment in technology that has enhanced the earning capacity of the business and expanded our market reach,” Eke said.