Unity Bank Plc has declared gross earnings of N33.906 billion for the nine months’ period ended September 30, 2020 and also recorded a 44% asset growth during the period.
A review of the unaudited results released to the Nigerian Stock Exchange showed that the gross earnings of N33.906 billion represents an 8 per cent growth from N31.256 billion recorded in the same period in 2019.
The lender’s total assets rose significantly to N420.870 billion in the nine-month period ended September 30, 2020, from N293.052 billion in the corresponding period of 2019, representing a whopping 44% growth.
This is even as the Bank grew its bottom-line by 6% as Profit Before Tax, PBT moved up to close at N1.710 billion from N1.611 billion in 2019. Profit After Tax, PAT equally grew by 6% to N1.573 billion compared to the N1.482 billion recorded in the same period in 2019.
Specifically, in the Q3, the lender declared a N590 million Profit Before Tax, PBT, representing another 6% increase from the N559.381 million recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2019.
This performance comes on the heels of the unmitigated impact of the global pandemic on the economy, which lingered throughout the quarter with its attendant headwinds that slowed down economic activities.
The lender also substantially grew its customers’ deposit portfolio to N332.362 billion from N257.691 billion for the same period in 2019, creating a 29 per cent increase, affirming the confidence reposed by its wide spectrum of the banking public. The lender, it was gathered, rolled out massive customer-centric products to the public especially in the retail space which accelerated the banking patronage during the period.
Commenting on the result, Unity Bank’s Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Tomi Somefun welcomed the steady growth of the balance sheet especially from both assets and liability side of the business and across key performance indices.
She said that this has had sustained impact on the bottom-line, even as the Bank continues to innovate in its e-business product bouquet to target and support value chain business with robust technology and thus diversify its earnings base’’.
Looking ahead, Mrs. Somefun stated that “One of the areas that will define our strategic direction going forward is investment in alternative channels leveraging further deployment of resources in technology. COVID-19 gave us a chance to test the integrity and scalability of our technology, the IT infrastructure, and the electronic banking channels, and provided us an opportunity to see where we needed to improve and strengthen, knowing that the future of sustainable banking business is in alternative channels”.
The results can also be attributable to the Bank’s growing brand profile and leadership in agribusiness, especially having provided loans and financing to over one million smallholder farmers especially those in primary production and other value chain businesses in the agricultural sector.
During the period under review, the Bank enhanced and deepened its collaboration and partnership with major commodity associations including the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Maize Farmers Association of Nigeria and the National Cotton Association of Nigeria (NACOTAN) to finance over 400 smallholder farmers’ crop production with its overall strategic intent of fostering food security, employment generation and aggregate economic welfare of citizens across the value chains.
The Bank also worked with processors and members of Millers’ Association of Nigeria to provide working capital through the CBN’s various intervention funds, while providing credit facilities to large number of input suppliers and vendors through the Anchor Borrower’s Programme.
In recognition of the above, Mrs Somefun added that the Bank will continue to focus on agriculture, while deepening business in various new markets that have been developed alongside to pull more resources and enhance multiple streams of income.
In the view of analysts, the consistent upward trajectory in the performance of the Bank as shown in Q1, H1 and Q3, 2020 results continue to reinforce growing market confidence as well as demonstrates the commitment and drive of the management to enhance shareholder’s value.