Zenith Bank Plc, one of the leading commercial banks in Nigeria Monday released its audited financials for the year ended December 31, 2017, with profit after tax hitting N177.933 billion, representing 37.24 percent increase from the N129.652 billion recorded in 2016.
The lender’s profit before tax grew by N46.713 billion, about 29.8 percent increase from the N156.748 billion recorded in 2016.
Gross earnings for the period jumped to N745.189 billion, up by N237.192 billion or 46.69 percent from N507.997 billion in the corresponding period of 2016; the bulk of which was the N474.628 billion interest and similar income, which rose from N384.557 billion; while interest and similar expenses jumped to N216.637 billion from N144.378 billion; resulting in net interest income of N257.991 billion, as against the N240.179 billion of 2016.
Impairment loss on financial assets rose three-fold from N32.35 billion in 2016 to N98.227 billion; which cut net interest income after impairment loss on financial assets fell to N159.764 billion, as against N207.829 billion in 2016.
Fee and commission income soared to N90.143 billion from N68.444 billion; trading gains however made up for the rising costs as it climbed 456.28 percent from N28.398 billion in 2016 to N157.974 billion.
Other operating income dropped slightly to N22.444 billion from N26.598 billion; depreciation of property and equipment increased to N12.428 billion from N9.679 billion; just as amortization of intangible assets stood at N1.631 billion from N1.435 billion. Personnel expenses rose to N64.459 billion from N59.326 billion; just as operating expenses climbed to N148.346 billion from N104.081billion.
Its income tax expenses dropped to N25.528 billion from N27.096 billion; leaving a net profit of N177.933 billion, as against the preceding year’s N129.652 billion, representing an increase of N48.281 billion or 37.23 percent; translating to earnings per share of N5.66, up from N4.12 in 2016.
Total assets for the period rose to N5.695 trillion from N4.739 trillion, with loans and advances dropping to N2 trillion from N2.289 trillion; just as total liabilities stood at N4.773 trillion, up from N3.035 trillion with customers’ deposits rising to N3.437 trillion from N2.983 trillion; just as total shareholders’ funds climbed to N821.658 billion from N704.465 billion.
The board of directors, however, proposed a final dividend of N2.45 kobo per share which in addition to the N0.25 per share paid as interim dividend amounts to N2.70 per share (2016: Interim of N0.25 per share and final of N1.77 per share) from the retained earnings account as at December 31, 2017. This will be presented for ratification by the shareholders at the next annual general meeting.
If the proposed dividend is approved by the shareholders, the bank will be liable to pay additional corporate tax estimated at N21.08 billion representing the difference between the tax liability calculated at 30 percent of the dividend approved and the tax charge reported in the statement of profit or loss and other comprehensive income for the year ended December 31, 2017.