Shareholders of Fidelity Bank Plc are to receive a dividend of N3.9 billion for the year ended December 31, 2016. The dividend, which translates to 14 kobo per 50 kobo share, will be paid from profit of N9.734 billion recorded for the year, down 29 per cent from N13.904 billion in 2015.
The full year audited results for the Nigerian lender, released at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), showed a 3.5 per cent growth in gross earning to N152 billion compared with N146 billion achieved in 2015.
Net interest income grew by 1.7 per cent from N60.9 billion to N61.9 billion in 2015, while fee and commission income rose from N17.23 billion to N20.557 billion. Impairment charges rose from N5.764 billion in 2015 to N8.671 billion in 2016.
Profit before tax and after tax fell from N14.024 billion to N11.061 billion and N13.904 billion to N9.734 billion in 2015 to 2016 respectively due to the one-off staff cost incurred during the year.
But total deposits, a measure of customer confidence, grew by three per cent from N769.6 billion in 2015 to N793.0 billion. Similarly total assets increased by 5.4 per cent to N1.298 trillion from N1.232 trillion in the corresponding year.
Commenting on the results, Chief Executive Officer of Fidelity Bank, Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo said: “Our financial performance in 2016 reflects the sound fundamentals of our evolving business model as we continued with the disciplined execution of our medium-term strategy which positions the business for improved and sustainable profitability.”
He explained that profits dipped due to the cost of N4.8 billion incurred as Fidelity Bank discontinued its legacy gratuity and retirement scheme.
“Excluding this one-off charge, PBT for the year would have been at N15.8 billion” he stated.
Nnamdi said, however, that Fidelity Bank’s retail and electronic banking strategy has continued to deliver impressive results with savings deposits growing by 30.1 per cent to N155.0 billion while customer enrollments on its flagship Instant Banking (*770#) and Online Banking products grew by over 200 per cent leading to a 44.6 per cent growth in net e-banking revenues to N7.5 billion.
This performance he said was “driven by the upgrade of our core banking system which provides a superior architecture that enhanced our operational efficiency and deepened our electronic banking capabilities.”
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