Fidelity Bank Plc has recorded an impressive full-year result, sustaining the sterling financial performance that has been witnessed in recent years. The Bank’s full-year 2019 results released on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), showed strong growth across key income and balance-sheet lines.
Specifically, Profit Before Tax, PBT rose by 21.0 percent to N30.4 billion compared with N25.1 billion recorded in the previous year. Similarly net profits surged by 24 percent to N28.4billion in 2019 from N22.9 billion from 2018. Gross Earnings grew by 14.0 percent to N215.5billion from N189.0 billion in 2018. Buoyed by the performance, the Bank plans to pay a dividend of 20kobo translating to N5.8billion compared to the dividend of 11 kobo paid in 2018.
In other indices, Net Interest Income increased by 13.2 percent to N83.1 billion in 2018. Net Operating Income rose by 15.6 percent to N112.3billion from N97.2billion whilst total assets grew by 22.9 percent to N2.114 trillion in the period under review from N1,719 trillion in 2018. Conversely there was a remarkable improvement in Non-performing loans (NPLs). The bank’s NPL ratio dropped to 3.3 percent from 5.7 percent in the 2018 due primarily to the growth in the loan book and a 25.1 percent decline in absolute NPLs resulting from the loan write-offs of over N12billion. Commenting on the results, Fidelity Bank CEO, Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo expressed delight with the performance “We are delighted at the results which clearly showed that we sustained our performance trajectory and continued to increase our market share driven by significant traction in our chosen business segments”, he said. On Digital Banking he said “ The results were enhanced by new initiatives in the retail lending segment and the deepening of the bank’s existing digital products. “We now have 47.4 percent of our customers enrolled on the mobile/internet banking products, 82.0 percent of total transactions now done on digital platforms and 31.1 percent of fee-based income now coming from our digital banking business”. He further revealed that the efforts aimed at strengthening the bank’s foothold of the retail market, is yielding significant results with savings deposits rising by 20.7 percent to N275.2 billion making it the 6th consecutive year of double-digit growth. “Savings deposits now accounts for about 22.5% of total deposits, an attestation of our increasing market share in the retail segment” stated Okonkwo.