UBA: Still A Leading Bank In Nigeria That Competes With Other International Financial Institutions In US, Uk, Europe And  UAE

 By Elizabeth Chukwuma

 Not many are surprised that the United Bank for Africa, UBA, plc, a Pan -African Bank, with over 1,000 business offices and customer touch points in 20 African countries would still remain a solid Financial Institution in the African Continent because of the repeated changing Nigerian Government Monetary and Fiscal policies on a yearly basis that had affected its operations on one or the other over the years, particular, in 2023.

With presence currently    in New York, London, Paris and Dubai,  United Arab Emirate in the Middle East,  the UBA Executive Director, Finance and Risk Management  had declared  that the Pan –African Bank is really connecting  people and businesses  across the African Continent  through retail,  commercial  and corporate banking , innovative cross-border payments  and remittances , trade finance  and ancillary  banking services.

The Bank may have made profits in the 2023 Fiscal year despite the changing government monetary and fiscal policies   which had resulted in the continued fluctuations of the naira in the country’s official and parallel foreign exchange markets and the high level of inflationary rate as it was said to have restrategised on its operations to meet the demand of customers. 

This is evident going by the Bank’s 2023, Financial report which was said to have been filed at the Nigerian Exchange limited , NGX, on Monday, April , 2024,  described as impressive by Financial analysts  and even local competitors. Going by a document which was presented to the NGX, by the Bank, and sighted by The Value News, the Bank   made a Profit Befo, UAre Tax, PBT, of   N758 billion, which was a remarkable improvement to the N201 billion recorded   at the end of the 2022, Fiscal year.

It was said to have  also made a Profit After Tax, PAT, of  N608 billion  compared to the NN170 billion that was achieved at the close of the 2022 Fiscal year.  The good news about the Bank operations I the 2023, Fiscal year was that  its Gross Earnings  rose  by 43%  to hit the N57.7 billion bracket, yet to be achieved by any other Commercial Bank in Nigeria in the recent  time.

At present  the Bank’s shareholders’  funds  was said to have hit the N2 trillion  market  while its total had jumped to  N20.65  trillion, making one of the most sold Financial Institutions in Nigeria that could compete with other major International Financial Institutions in the world  that have wide spread and links with the Nigerian Banks to do business.

In spite of the fact that the pan African Bank made an impressive showing in the 2023, Fiscal year performance,  an insider informed the online Magazine that  the UBA Group  was lucky   as its  cost –to-income  ration  was said to have dropped  from  59.2%  that was said to have been recorded  in 2022, to 37.2%  , pointing to the Group’s improving efficiency and tightening of areas financial leakage.

Elumelu: Chairman, UBA plc

Going by the impressive performance of the Bank in its 2023  operations, may have informed why Tony Elumelu, the Bank’s Chairman,  in fulfillment of 2022, promise to the shareholders   at its Annual General Meeting , AGM,   had  proposed a  dividend of  2.30 kobo  for each ordinary share  of 50 Kobo  held as the end of December 31, 2023.

Informed source told The Value News online publication that the financial dividend which was said to have been reached at the Bank’s recent AGM, is still subject ‘’to the ratification of the shareholders upcoming AGM. 

Aware that the Bank makes much of its profit by trading with its funds which has to do with giving out loans to customers may have informed why it recorded 61.3% growth in such loans as it as said to have moved  to Nn5.5 trillion  alone in 2023 while Customers deposits on its part   grew by 90.31% to N14.9 trillion due to aggressive drive of he marketers, both within and the offshore branches in the 26 African countries  , UK, US , France and other parts of the world compared to the N7.8 trilion   that was said to have been achieved in 2022. Olive Alawuba, the Bank’s Group Managing Director was said to have further attributed improved C ‘’to the increased deposit in the Bank to customer confidence, successes from  the Bank ongoing Business transformation programme and the deepening  of its retail banking  franchise’’.

The UBA, Group, Managing Director did not stop there.  He had stated further that the improved Customers deposit recorded at the close of business in 2023, was orchestrated by the its diversified business model, Pan-African and Internation strategy. He had said that these business models which is justified by the contribution of  its Ex-Nigeria business to the Group’s result   had reinforced its resolve  to expand  the Bank market share  of customers, funding, digital and transaction  banking  businesses across the  West  and Central African sub-regions and the Africa Continent in general.

Alawuba, GMD, UBA plc

An elated Alawuba, who could not hide his feelings may have gladdened the heart of the Management and Staff of the Group, when he declared that   ‘’it will continue to expand its market share to create value for the shareholders, particular, the Board members, described in financial circles as ‘’the serious shareholders’’ because of the huge funds they have invested in the Bank.

Ugo Nwaghoodoh,  The Bank Executive Director, Finance  and Risk Management , had described the 23 Fisal year as  an eventful year in its operations as nobody knew it could generate any profit from its sevices because  of ‘’the galloping inflation  and local currency devaluation ravaging  key Foreign exchange markets amidst  pockets  of regional  conflicts  and security challenges’’.  

Delighted at  the strong  growth at the Bank earnings and profitability recorded I the year, the Executive Director had said  that  that the Group  had conservatively set up  ‘’significant  impairment  reserves  against its overall risk assets  portfolio  considering  the latent impact  of the macroeconomic   headwinds  on the Bank credit portfolio. He had confirmed that that Bank cost Risk grew to 3.09% from 0.63% in the previous 2022, fiscal year.

On the  expectation  for the 2024, Financial year,  which is just four months away,  Nwaghodoh, disclosed  that that ‘’the Group remains  fervently committed  to sustainable growth  and maintaining  its strong  compliance and risk management practices  culture  even as the Bank drive    its business  through the next phase of growth’’.

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