For strict adherence to corporate governance principles, shareholders of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc (GTBank) has applauded the management for efficiently running its affairs, even as they approved a final dividend of N1.75 kobo for the 2016 financial year.
Reviewing its performance, the Chairman of the bank, Mrs Osaretin Demuren, noted that the final dividend per share of N1.75, as proposed by the board aggregated with the 25 kobo interim dividend bringing the total dividend for the year to N2 per share.
According to her, “This is a 13 per cent increase over N1.77 paid in 2015 which represents a dividend yield of 8.16 per cent at a market price of N24.61.”
She pointed out that the subsidiaries steady growth continued to resonate the success of the bank in Africa. “Worthy of mention are the achievements of GTBank Gambia, and GTBank Sierra Leone, emerging as the most profitable bank in their respective countries.”
The Chairman told shareholders the Bank’s Gross Earnings grew by 37.4 per cent from N301.9 billion in 2015 to N414.6 billion in 2016, and Profit Before Tax by 36.8 per cent to N165.1 billion in 2016 from N120.7 billion in 2015.
“Customer Deposits grew by 23.3 per cent from N1.61 trillion in 2015 to N1.99 trillion in 2016. We also maintained our position as the most efficient bank in Nigeria by recording a Cost to Income Ratio (CIR) of 40.8 per cent in 2016.
She assured shareholders that the bank is well positioned to leverage opportunities that exist in the industry, and deliver strong and sustainable returns to shareholders.
The Managing Director, GTBank, Segun Agbaje, said the 2016 improved performance reflects the bank’s strong business fundamental in delivering long term sustainable growth, while leading in the areas of payment with the ‘Bank 737’, a USSD based platform that provides easy payment services for customers.
According to him, within a year of introducing the service, the bank recorded an uptake of over three million customers with over N1 trillion in transactions on the platform.
“As part of strategy to grow retail business, we are continuously making our banking processes and touch points simpler, easier and faster, irrespective of where, and when our customers choose the bank,” adding that customer base tripled over the last five years to 9.68 million customers by the end of last year.
Agbaje noted that although the challenges in the macroeconomic environment were likely to persist, the bank’s commitment to staying positive, delivering exceptional financial services to its customers, and adding value to all stakeholders has never been stronger
“We promise to add value to your stocks, which is why there is an appreciation in the dividend paid compared to that of last year. With the repositioning of our business structures and significant investment in our digital abilities, we are confident in our capability to deliver differentiated products and services to our customers whilst enhancing cost-efficiency and reducing risk,” he said.