Unity Bank Plc has recorded growth in profitability by over 96 per cent as its profit before tax stood at N1.052 billion as against N536 million in H1 2018.
A review of the bank’s performance also shows significant improvements across key financial metrics such as the earning assets and gross loans.
The bank recorded a quantum leap in its earning assets by 62 per cent, thus leading to higher income and grew its gross loans by 456 per cent.
This increase was also boosted by an increase in investment securities (holdings of Treasury Bills and Bonds), which led to a 23 per cent growth in interest income.
Similarly, during the period under review, gross earnings grew by 17 per cent, while operating expenses reduced by 20 per cent. Earnings per share improved by 66 per cent to 17.99kobo for the period ended June 30, 2019 compared to 10.86kobo in FY 2018; with PBT Margin, Net Assets per share and ROA improving by 1.3 per cent, 0.2 per cent and 0.2 per cent respectively.
The bank in a statement noted that the performance was supported by the bank’s effort to improve asset utilisation, which reduced the need for asset acquisition, thus translating to lower depreciation and amortization expenses, with this cost declining by 27 per cent from the comparative period of 2018.
The bank also increased its focus on its agribusiness through its partnership with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Further strategic initiatives adopted by the bank include implementation of various staff optimisation strategies, which led to marginal decline of six per cent in personnel costs. Staff allocation was also better streamlined to leverage capacity for improved productivity.
Commenting on the result, the Managing Director/CEO, Mrs. Tomi Somefun, said: “The bank has started to reap from its multiple streams of income which include asset creation, investments and trade activities amongst others.”
She further stated that the bank’s increasing focus on its areas of strength, agribusiness and retail, its automation of more processes with the aim of cutting off wasteful expenditure and constant improvement of service delivery through the use of internally developed solutions, saved the bank huge sums in cost.
Analysts are of the view that with continuous efforts to reposition the bank and seize growing opportunities in agribusiness as bullwalk to diversify earnings base in the retail market, there will be brighter prospects for the bank in the years ahead.