…Loans to businesses hit N171bn
By Adewale Sanyaolu
The Bank of Industry (BoI) has posted an operating Profit Before Tax (PBT) of N17 billion in 2016, about 44 per cent increase over the N11.9 billion recorded in 2015, a feat it described as unprecedented in the history of the Development Finance Institution.
The bank’s loans and advances also rose by 10 per cent to N171 billion in 2016 from N156 billion in 2015, even as disbursements to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) that similarly went up by 42 per cent within the same period to N8 billion compared with N5.64 billion in 2015.
This was as the bank assured its shareholders of stronger financial year, noting that its financial operations in Q1 2017 have already showed stronger profitability as against Q1 2016.
The Development Finance Institution (DFI) stated that the recent approval of its accounts by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) clearly shows that 2017 will definitely be a profitable year for it.
A review of the bank’s financial activities during the year showed that the quality of its risk assets also improved phenomenally with a reduction in the ratio of non-performing loans (NPLs) to 3.72 per cent in 2016 from 5.87 in 2015.
According to the bank, the feat was achieved in 2016 when the average ratio of NPLs in the nation’s banking industry rose sharply to 14 per cent, which is beyond the CBN’s threshold of 5 per cent.
Commenting on the bank’s performance in the financial year under review, Acting Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Waheed Olagunju, attributed the growth to strong commitment, professionalism and strict adherence to global best practices by management team and staff.
He added that these achievements also culminated in BoI’s consistent high ratings by international and domestic rating agencies being upgraded and affirmed, describing it as the best in the bank’s history despite last year’s economic headwinds.
While Moody’s assigned BoI Aa1 in 2016 up from Ba3 of 2015, Agusto’s rating of AA- in 2016 was higher than A+ of 2015. AA+ assigned by Fitch in 2015 was affirmed in 2016.
Acknowledging the bank’s feat, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) at its yearly dinner and awards conferred a merit award on the bank for its outstanding contributions to national development.
Reacting to the awards presented to BoI, Olagunju said: “We are delighted that the country we serve and the various constituencies we serve continue to appreciate the bank’s contributions to development of Nigeria, which is also coming from such a prestigious and reputable professional body (ICAN). This will have a very positive effect on us as we are going to be challenged to do more for the development of Nigeria.
“We have lots of ICAN members in the bank who have made phenomenal contributions through the bank and have continued to do so. We will continue to support ICAN as well as their members who work in the bank because they are making valuable contributions to the bank. It is only a competent management that can efficiently and confidently manage an organisation and human resources are one of the major elements of an organisation,” he added.
He stated that for the bank to continue to deliver on its mandate on a sustainable basis in the country, it must be able to mobilise financial resources from the public and the private sectors domestically and internationally, saying that the only way to achieve this is having heavy financials.