Union Bank of Nigeria Plc in it’s unaudited financial statements for the quarter ended 31st March 2022 has reported a 18 per cent growth in the bank’s gross earnings for the period as against the first quarter of 2021.
Driven by strong earning assets from on-lending to key sectors in the Nigerian economy, the bank made N42.9 billion gross earnings in Q1 2022 as against N36.4 billion reported in Q1 2021
Net interest income after impairments of the bank also went up by 27 per cent to N12.9 billiin as against N10.1 billion reported in Q1 2021.
According to the statement submitted to the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) Profit before tax of the Bank went down by 8.8 per cent to N6.4 billion as against N7.0 billion in 2021.
Following the pay down of expensive time deposits, customer deposits went down by 3.5 per cent at N1.31 trillion from N1.36 trillion reported in Dec 2021
Commenting on the results, Emeka Okonkwo, CEO said, “In 2022, we renewed our focus on turbocharging productivity and ensuring we fully leverage the strength of our digital channels, regional network and talent to maximise the bottom line.
“Our efforts are gaining momentum and notwithstanding a challenging economic climate in Q1 2022, our Net Interest Income after impairment grew by 27 per cent compared to the same quarter in 2021 from N10.1 billion to N12.9 billion.
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Gross Earnings are also up by 18 per cent to N42.9 billion against N36.4 billion in Q1 2021. This was bolstered by improved asset yields, treasury trading income and revenues from our alternate channels.
We are steadily seeing increasing customer adoption with a 36 per cent YoY increase in active users on UnionDirect, our agency banking network, and increasing transaction volumes with a 20 per cent YoY growth across our digital channels.
Speaking on the Q1 2022 numbers, Chief Financial Officer of Union Bank, Joe Mbulu said the Bank continued to demonstrate resilience in its Q1 2022 results.
“Headline Gross Earnings increased by 18 per cent to N42.9 billion from N36.4 billion in Q1 2021. Net interest income after impairment charges grew by 27 per cent driven by 41 per cent increase in Interest Income to N31.4 billion from N22.2 billion in Q1 2021. Non-Interest Income declined by 19.1 per cent from N14.2 billion to N11.4 billion driven by higher foreign currency revaluation loss.
Operating Expenses increased marginally by 3.9 per cent QoQ, as a result of higher regulatory, diesel, and software expenses. In Q2 2022, we will focus on optimising operating costs by intensifying measures to mitigate the impact of high inflation.
Mbulu added that that Bank would continue to drive for a more efficient balance sheet by paying down expensive deposits and pricing our risk assets better.