Zenith Bank Plc has announced its unaudited results for the nine months period ended 30 September 2021 with a profit before tax (PBT) of NGN180 billion, reflecting a 1% growth over the NGN177 billion recorded in the same period in the previous year amidst a challenging macroeconomic environment exacerbated by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
According to the group’s unaudited nine months financial results presented to the Nigerian Exchange (NGX), gross earnings increased by 2% from NGN509 billion to NGN519 billion largely due to growth in current account maintenance fees as well as fees from electronic products during the period.
Despite continuing economic uncertainties, the group said it grew its net earnings through a reduction in the cost of funds while keeping the cost of risk flat—this strengthened Earnings Per Share (EPS) by 1% to NGN5.11.
It added that it achieved a 9% growth in interest income from loans and advances on the back of an increase in gross loans of 9% year to date and enhanced efficiency, resulting in a 21% drop in interest expense to NGN74 billion from NGN94 billion.
This, it said, culminated in growth in net interest income of 4%, from NGN225 billion recorded at the end of Q3 2020 to NGN235 billion in the current period.
“Total assets also increased by 3% to NGN8.8 trillion in the current period, while total deposits grew by 13% to close at NGN6.0 trillion from NGN5.3 trillion as of 31 December 2020, with a substantial contribution from retail deposits.
As a result of the focused drive to increase retail deposits in the past three years, there was a decrease in The Group’s cost of funds by 35% to 1.4% from 2.2% year-on-year. The Group continues to make significant progress in its retail banking drive, as evidenced by remarkable growth in transaction volumes and value across its digital platforms and strong growth in customer acquisition,” a statement from Zenith Bank added.
For the year’s final quarter, management’s outlook remains positive, buoyed by a declining inflationary trend, expected increase in foreign exchange inflows, and improving oil production.