Shareholders of Wema Bank have commended the board, management and staff of the financial institution for recording impressive performance in 2018 despite the challenging macroeconomic and regulatory environment.
They gave the commendation on Wednesday at the bank’s 2018 Annual General Meeting in Lagos.
The shareholders also gave their approval to the financial results of the bank and the 3kobo per share dividend payment for the year ended December 31, 2018.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the bank, for the first time in 14 years, rewarded the shareholders on their investment in the company.
The Chairman of the bank, Babatunde Kasali, said the banking industry witnessed a lot of challenges in the year under review as the Central Bank of Nigeria increased its interventionist posture, issuing circulars with increased frequency.
Kasali, however, said the bank delivered on most of its strategic goals for 2018 and undertook bold steps to ensure that its future mandate consolidated on the good work done in previous years.
NAN reports that Wema Bank recorded an increase in its gross earnings by 9.56 per cent to N71.5 billion from N65.3 billion in 2017, while the interest income appreciated by 8.6 per cent to N57.6 billion from N53.1 billion.
From the results presented, the net fee and commission increased to N6.5 billion from N5.6 billion, the net trading income rose to N5.5 billion from N4.8 billion, while the other income appreciated to N1.8 billion from N1.6 billion.
Its total assets rose to N488.8 billion from N387.6 billion, while the total liabilities went up to N437.9 billion from N337.9 billion, with the shareholders fund rising to N50.9 billion from N49.6 billion.
While the profit before tax rose by 59.4 per cent to N4.8 billion, the profit after tax rose by 47.5 per cent to N3.3 billion from N2.3 billion, with the earnings per share going up by 48.3 per cent to N8.60k from N5.80k in 2018.
On the outlook for 2019, the chairman said growth would be slow, advising the banking industry to prepare for that.
Kasali said the bank intended to find opportunities for accelerated growth, especially around the sectors and industries that enjoyed growth such as agriculture and manufacturing.
According to him, internally significant steps were taken in 2018 to ensure that the bank would deliver value to shareholders in 2019.
He said: “Another of our core commitment in 2019 is to continue to use our technological edge to drive and deliver on our goals for the year.
“Wema Bank is well positioned to ride the growth and deliver better performance in 2019.
“As a bank, we look forward to 2019 with great confidence as we begin to realize the Wema dream of giving all who interact with us a delightful and memorable service.”