April 19, 2021
By Evan Charles InvestAdvocate
Lagos (INVESTADVOCATE)-Africa’s global lender, the United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) said on Monday said its post-tax profit for the period ended March 31, 2021 appreciated 26.8 percent to N38.15 billion from N30.10 billion posted a year ago.
Profit after tax (PAT) grew 24.0 percent to N40.58 billion from N32.72 billion declared the same period of 2020.
Gross earnings of UBA increased from N147.18 billion in the first quarter (Q1) of 2020 to N144.45 billion posted in the review period of 2021; showing an increase of 5.6 percent, Africa’s global lender said in a filing with the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
Shares of UBA at the close of Monday’s trading on the Nigerian bourse appreciated 1.44 percent to N7.05 from N6.95 traded the previous session; gaining 0.10 kobo per share.
“The bank leveraged on modest growth in both interest and non-interest income as well as increased efficiency to deliver an impressive 24% year-on-year growth in Profit Before Tax in the first three months of the 2021 financial year, to N40.6 billion compared with N32.7 billion recorded in the first quarter of 2020.” it said in a statement made available to InvestAdvocate.
The statement says driven by a year-on-year growth in interest income, UBA Group recorded another impressive 5.5% percent year-on-year growth in Gross Earnings to close at N155.4 billion for the three month period ending March 2021, compared to N147.2 billion recorded in the first three months of last year 2020.
Kennedy Uzoka, group managing director (GMD/CEO) expressed satisfaction with the Bank’s performance in the first quarter of 2021, stating that the result reflects UBA’s capacity to sustainably grow earnings even in a highly uncertain macroeconomic environment.
He says that the robust capital and liquidity positions have positioned the bank as it continues to support its customers across diverse sectors and markets, guided by prudent risk management practices.
“This impressive 2021Q1 results reflect the capacity of our business to sustainably grow earnings even in a highly uncertain macroeconomic environment. We remain upbeat on the macroeconomic outlook of the countries in which we operate, especially as the COVID-19 vaccine distribution gains traction globally, whilst commodity prices and currencies continue to stabilise. Our robust capital and liquidity positions have positioned us to continue to support our customers across diverse sectors and markets, guided by prudent risk management practices,” The GMD said.
He pointed out the bank’s effort towards diligently executing its priorities for the year 2021, as it leverages people, process, and technology to deliver the best customer experience across all its channels and touchpoints, achieving industry leadership and dominance, adding, “The bank is making strong progress in Nigeria where our continuous market share and efficiency gains are translating into higher profits. We are committed to sustaining this strong start throughout the year, leveraging our customer-First (C-1st) philosophy and unparalleled execution to deliver even stronger returns to our esteemed shareholders in 2021 and beyond;” Uzoka said.
Ugo Nwaghodoh, UBA’s group chief finance officer (GCFO) said he was particularly pleased with the bank’s annualised return on average equity of 20.5 percent and return on average asset of 2.0 percent, as these indices buttress UBA’s commitment to delivering sustainable value to its stakeholders.
“We continued to deploy our balance sheet efficiency and digital-led cost optimisation initiatives to achieve desired outcomes. Cost-to-income ratio improved by 200bps to 60.4% during the period, whilst cost of funds settled at 2.0%, a 130bps reduction from 3.3% in 2020 Q1,” the added.
The GCFO expressed confidence that the bank will meet and surpass its target for the remaining three quarters of the year, adding that, “We are confident on the strong prospect for earnings growth, particularly as we are better positioned to consolidate recent market share gains in Nigeria and other geographies where we operate. This result is a strong start for the year, and we are optimistic about sustaining the exciting performance throughout the year and beyond,” Nwaghodoh affirmed.