By Nse Anthony-Uko
(Sundiata Finance) – Top Nigerian lender, Fidelity Bank recorded a very strong financial performance in the first half of 2017, posting impressive growth in profits, gross earnings and other indices for the six months period ended June 30, 2017.
Details of the audited results, released at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) today show that gross earnings rose by 22.1 percent from N70.3billion in H1 2016 to N85.8 billion for the corresponding period at June 30, 2017. The growth in Gross Earnings was driven primarily by a 27.8% increase in interest income and a 0.7 percent growth in net fee income to N11.2 billion. Similarly profits surged by 66.7 percent from N6.1 billion in 2016 to N10.2 billion, just as it recorded growth in operating income, total asset, equity, operational income and other performance indices in the period under review.
Fidelity Bank CEO, Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo attributed the double digits growth in earnings and profits to the disciplined execution of the Banks medium term strategy which focused on deepening its market share in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SME), Retail and Digital banking spaces.
“Our balance sheet optimization initiatives continued to deliver improved results as Net Interest Margin (NIM) increased by 7.4% in H1 2017 from 6.4% (2016FY), just as the growth in the yield on our earning assets outpaced the increase in funding costs. The process improvement and digital banking initiatives in the period helped to optimize our cost profile as total expenses declined by 1.8% (despite the high inflationary environment) leading to a reduction in our Cost to Income Ratio (CIR) to 67.3%” he stated.
Fidelity Banks’ retail strategy continued to deliver impressive results in HI2017 as savings deposits; a measure of customer confidence, increased by 3.9% to N161.1 billion in June 2017 on the strength of improved cross selling of its digital banking products with “over 27% of customers now enrolled on our flagship mobile (*770#) and internet banking products” he explained.
With presence in the major cities and commercial centers in the country and reputed for integrity and professionalism, Fidelity Bank is one of Nigerian foremost financial institutions. The bank which is managed by a highly professional team and a reputable Board of Directors with emphasis on strong Corporate Governance, is driven by the vision of being number one in its chosen markets and providing banking and financial services in easy and accessible ways.