Zenith Bank posts N117b profit before tax.

World Finance Awards: Zenith Bank wins best commercial bank

Zenith Bank Plc has recorded N117 billion Profit Before Tax (PBT) in its half-year results for the period ended June 30, 2021.

According to the bank’s audited half-year financial results presented to the Nigerian Exchange (NGX), the group’s half-year PBT represents three per cent growth from N114 billion reported in same period of last year.

Despite a challenging macroeconomic environment exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the bank achieved positive growth across key financial metrics performance.

It also recorded a nine per cent growth in non-interest income on N116 billion in June last year to N127 billion in June 2021.

Overall, the significant reduction in interest expense by 26 per cent and growth in non-interest income by nine per cent culminated in improved profitability.

In a statement, the bank said the group’s retail journey continues to deliver positive results as retail deposits grew by N38.2 billion from N1.72 trillion to N1.76 trillion year-to-date.

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Savings balances grew marginally by two per cent year-to-date to close at N1.18 trillion from N1.16 trillion as at December 2020.

The drive for increased retail deposits and a low-interest yield environment helped to reduce the cost of funding from 2.2 per cent to 1.3 per cent in the current period.

The operating expenses grew by 10 per cent year-on-year, but growth remains below the inflation rate.

The group’s Earnings per Share (EPS) rose by two per cent from N3.30 to N3.38 within the review period.

The group’s total customer deposits rose by eight per cent to N5.77 trillion, demonstrating growth in the market share while total assets grew marginally to N8.52 trillion as at 30 June 2021 from N8.48 trillion recorded as at 31 December 2020.

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The statement reads: “Despite the Covid-19 pandemic induced challenges and the challenging operating environment, the group grew its risk assets as gross loans rose by three per cent year-to-date, from N2.92 trillion to N2.99 trillion. This was conservatively achieved at a low Non-Performance Loans (NPL) ratio of 4.51 per cent as against 2020 financial year end of 4.29 per cent, a reduced cost of risk of 1.3 per cent compared with 1.8 per cent achieved in June 2020.

“Prudential ratios such as liquidity and capital adequacy also remained above regulatory thresholds at 69.9 per cent and 22 per cent, respectively.

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“Zenith Bank has grown enormously in 30 years to become Nigeria’s largest and one of Africa’s largest financial institutions by tier-1 capital, with shareholders’ funds of N1.1 trillion ($2.64 billion) as at 31st December 2020.

“The bank continues to distinguish itself in the Nigerian financial services industry through superior service offerings, unique customer experience and sound financial indices.

“Zenith Bank is the clear leader in the digital space with several firsts in the deployment of innovative products, solutions and an assortment of alternative channels that ensure convenience, speed and safety of transactions.

“The Tier-1 bank explained that despite the continued prevalence of the Covid-19 pandemic, there is cautious optimism that the global economy will continue to recover as vaccination programmes intensified.”

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