FBN Holdings Plc, last week published its unaudited financials for the nine-month ended September 30, 2022, reporting robust growth in top line, especially interest income, which climbed 42.38% higher, while profit after tax rose 123.47%, the best among its peers, even as the management of the bank subsidiary must still do a lot more to contain growth in impairment charge (provisions for lost and doubtful loans) with better risk management.
Gross earnings for the period stood at N547.2bn, up from N432.25bn, the lion’s share of which was the N509.396bn from the group’s commercial banking operational arm, followed from afar by the N35.686bn from merchant banking and asset management arm, while “others” could only contribute N2.118bn. A further breakdown showed that N453.825bn of FBN Holdings’ revenue was derived from Nigeria, compared to the previous N347.583bn; while N83.375bn came from outside the country, up from N84.667bn
Of this amount, interest income for the nine-month period amounted to N370.364bn, up from N260.118bn; while interest expenses grew from N97.157bn to N120.831bn, driven by the N77.272bn paid on customer deposits, up from N54.363bn. This resulted in a net interest income of N249.533bn, compared to N162.961bn in the corresponding period of last year.
Impairment charge for losses stood at N36.711bn, up from the previous N34.839bn. Of this amount, customer loans and advances gone bad cost the group N36.532bn, compared to N32.962bn in 2021. Net interest income after impairment charge for losses stood at N212.822bn, compared the N128.122bn reported in the prior nine months.
Fee and commission income improved marginally from N103.766bn to N110.841bn, driven by the N39.977bn earned as electronic banking fees, which dropped from N42.023bn last year; while account maintenance fees increased to N13.151bn from N11.742bn, among others. Fee and commission expense rose from N17.867bn to N19.843bn; leaving net fee and commission income at N90.998bn, from N85.899bn.
Foreign exchange income stood at N2.135bn, after a loss of N14.375bn from the N5.439bn gain in the quarter between July and September), , compared to the previous nine-month gain of N5.907bn; net gains on sale investment securities grew from N21.466bn to N26.945bn; net gains from financial instruments at FVTPL dropped from N29.615bn to N21.887bn.
Other operating income improved from N8.198bn to N12.066bn in nine months, after contributing N2.887bn in final three months of the period, which was better than the loss of N9.076bn in the comparable period of last year. The major contributor were recoveries valued at N5.506bn, compared to the previous N5.22bn; and sundry income of N5.333bn, up from N3.003bn. Dividend income dropped from N3.547bn to N3.002bn.
Other operating income jumped to N12.066bn, from N8.198bn; personnel expenses rose to N84.908bn from N79.321bn; depreciation, amortization and impairment was flat at N20.503bn when compared to the previous N20.565bn; while other operating expenses soared from N129.568bn to N158.912bn; with regulatory costs (AMCON) amounting to N99.295bn, more than double the N45.899bn contributed in the similar period of 2021; followed by maintenance expenses, which increased to N29.015bn from N24.948bn. Operating profit, therefore, stood at N105.532bn, more than double the previous N53.3bn.
Profit before tax stood at N105.492bn, compared to the previous N52.933bn; while income tax rose from N12.082bn to N14.203bn; leaving profit after tax at N91.289bn, up from N40.851bn in the corresponding period of last year, translating to N2.51, up from N1.12 each in the first nine months of 2021. PBT was driven by the group’s commercial banking business, which contributed N94.738bn, accounting also for N10.721bn in tax expense; followed by N11.629bn and N3.283bn from the Merchant Banking and Asset Management arm.
On the balance sheet, total assets improved from N8.932tr as of December 31, 2021, to N9.852tr between January and September, 2022, the bulk of which was the loan book that grew from N2.881tr to N3.599tr; while total liabilities rose to N8.959tr from N8.052tr, lifted by customer deposits which increased to N6.6tr from N5.849tr. Shareholders’ funds for the period, therefore stood at N893.385bn from N879.856bn.