Banks Present 2023 First  Half – Year  Audited  Reports, putting Smiles  On Shareholders Faces

By Elizabeth Chukwuma

 Between August and now , all roads lead to the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE,in   Lagos, the nation’s Commercial nerve centre,  as  banks presents  their 2023 -Half year audited interim financial statements. At the last count, no fewer than four Money Deposit banks   were said to have presented their financial statements at the NSE, before the deadline set by the regulatory Authority.   Some of the banks that were said to have gone to the NSE to present their audited half- year financial report includes United Bank For Africa, UBA plc, a pan African Bank,  Zenith Bank plc,  Guaranty Trust  Bank, GTB and Stanbic  IBTC Bank.

 The UBA plc, may have led the pack of banks which   Board of Directors, had  presented its  2023 half- year financial statements, that was said to have been prepared by a five-  man  Audit  Committee  headed by one  Feyi Ogoji , who incidentally is the Chairman   of the bank’s  shareholders .  Other members of the  audit Committee , were   Matthew Esonanjor,  and Alex Adio , all shareholders of the bank ,  Ms  Angela Aneke, an Independent Non-Executive Director and Mrs.  Owanari Luke , another  Non-Executive Director of the Bank.

In approving the bank’s five -man Audit Committee report, before presenting it at the NSE, for approval ,  bank’s the Board of Directors, were said to have  constituted a 15-man   Analysis  Committee. Members of the Board Analysis  were  Tony Elumelu,  a business mogul and the Board Chairman, Oliver Alawuba, the bank GMD, , Muyiwa Akinyemi, Deputy GMD, Ugochukwu  Nwaghodoh, Risk and Finance,  Mr. Alex Alozie,  Group Operating Officer,  Emen Usoro, Executive Director , North Bank,  and Ms. Sola  Yemi-Ajayi, International Banking, Abiola Bawuah, ED/CEO,  UBA , Africa and  Mrs. Owanari Duke, Independent Non -Executive Director,  and Ms. Angela Aneke, Independent Non -Executive Director.

Other members of the UBA plc, Board of Directors  , analysi Committee, according to informed sources who were  Erelu  Angela Adebayo, Non-Executive Director,  Mr. Abdlqadir Bello, FCA, Non- Executive Director,  Kayode Fasola, Non-Executive Director , Hajia Aisha Hassan -Baba , Independent  None- Executive and Caroline Anyawu, Non- Executive Director.        

 Based on the Committee’s report,  the MDB , had recorded a gross  earnings of N981.78 billion as at June 30, 2023 as against  N372 billion  recorded  during the same period in 2022. Even the bank’s assets were said to have grown in lips and bounds as well.      As at June 30, 2023 the bank’s total assets  was said to have  hit N13, 382,382 as against  N10,857,571 billion in December 2022 whie   Customers deposits ,   recorded a phenomenal increase  as it rose to N11.4 trillion and have continued to be on the increase. The bank’s shareholders’  funds were said to have increased  to N1.712 trillion  , thus reflecting  the Group’s  strong  capacity  for  internal  capital  generation as reported by the  audit Committee.

The  Bank was said to have   made a Profit Before  Tax, PBT,  of N404 billion , despite the tough   macroeconomic  backdrop  and  geopolitical challenges in the  West African sub-region , thus representing  an increase of 371% when compared  to the N85.71 billion  recorded in the first half of 2022.   

It was said  to have also earned a Profit After, PAT, of N378.24 billion, which the Board of Directors had said was about N70.3 billion or 438% higher than the amount that was said to have been earned by the pan African bank in the same period of 2022.

Giving the huge PAT, earned by the bank, in the first six months of 2023, may have informed why the Board had proposed an interim dividend of N0.50 per share from the retained account as at June 30, 2023 compaired to the proposed N0.20 per share from the retained profit with the same period in 2022.  Note that approved interim shareholders dividend as at June 30, 2023, clearly shows that   it is over 150% higher than that of 2022, approved shareholders’ dividend or .

The huge PFT earned by the bank   in the first half of 2023, according to sources  was said to have been  generated from the bank’s business of banking which caters for the banking needs   of Institutions, Corporate , Commercial and consumer Customer segments of the society.

 Indeed, the Money Deposit Bank, MDB, according to an insider was said to have provided various services ranging from   remittance, treasury management, customer/investor, digital and general banking which were said to have enhanced it profit  earnings  in the six months under review , thus leading to  its  contribution and improved  market  share    from the subsidiaries  in the African Continent and the global financial market. This is in addition to providing   pension custody services that was said to be offered through its subsidiary, UBA Pensions Custodian Limited.   

Oliver Alawuba, UBA, GMD

  Alawuba, the GMD, of the bank, had said that  the impressive performance  of the bank in the first six months of 2023, was not unconnected to its commitment   to consistently deliver  value to   shareholders, noting that the UBA Group ,  made progress  in digital payments,  retail penetration,  and also benefited from  the revaluation gains , arising from  the harmonization  of the both official and  black market rates  of the foreign  exchange rates  in Nigeria,

The UBA, GMD, did not stop there. He may have gladdened the heart of shareholders and depositors and other customers of the bank  when he disclosed that the business  of the MDB,  had remains on a steady growth  trajectory  as it continue ‘’to strengthen  the bank  risk management  traditions  and practices  necessary technology  investments  to deliver premium services  to  customers  in Nigeria ,African Continent and other parts of the world’’.  

 The impressive performance of the bank in its operations in the first six months of 2023, may have informed why the bank’s shares are the most traded on the trading floor of the NSE.  source at the NSE, had corroborated the bank’s audit Committees report  approved by the Board  that a total of 3.88 billion of the bank shares were traded on the Nigeria Stock Exchange Limited, NGX, in the first six months of 2023, representing 11.4% of the bank’s shares outstanding.

The UBA  Board plc,  may not have  given room  for the Directors  to buy  shares secretly  during the period under consideration   but were said to have approved a global  Personal  Investment Policy  , which covers   the Directors, staff and  related parties. The source informed the Value News online Magazine that ‘’the policy prohibited the bank Directors, employees and related parties/Companies from insider dealings on the shares of the UBA plc and related parties.

The essence of the policy, The Value New News online Magazine gathered   is ‘’to prevent abuse of confidential   non-public information that may be gained during the execution of the bank business’’. The policy, it was gathered   also serves ‘’to ensure compliance with the country’s laws and regulatory requirements’’.

 There is no gain saying the fact that in accordance with the NSE Rule Book and amendments  to the Listing Rules,  UBA plc, Authorities, according to insiders observed the  closed periods  within which  affected Directors and  other staff  including Corporate Organisations   were restricted   from trading   on the shares of the bank, meaning that’’ there was no case of violation  during the period under review’’.

Zenith Bank plc, which had delayed   the release of its  2023 half -year audited reports   due to  post -audit issues  had followed the foot- steps of the UBAL PLC Authorities to   submit the interim   Financial statements of the bank  to the  NSE for Consideration. The high rise new generation bank   was said to have kept its promise of submitting the audited 2023 , half report of the bank to NSE , before  the earlier  agree  date of September 14, 2023, by the Board.

The bank was said to have recorded   a gross earnings of N967.6 billion, going by the report of the bank’s audit Committee approve by the board of Directors   as against Nn404.8 billion in the first half of 2022., showing a triple digit growth   of 39%. The bank total assets, going by its interim audited report   was said to have grown from N12.3 trillion   to N16 trillion, showing an increase of  31%.      

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