Home » Nigerian banking tycoon Jim Ovia’s Zenith Bank earns $587.8 million in profit

Nigerian banking tycoon Jim Ovia’s Zenith Bank earns $587.8 million in profit

by Omokolade Ajayi

Zenith Bank Plc, a leading financial services group led by Nigerian banking tycoon Jim Ovia, has reported a profit of N244.56 billion ($587.8 million) at the end of 2021, driven by sustained growth in gross earnings.

Zenith Bank is Nigeria’s most profitable bank and the largest listed financial services group on the Nigerian Exchange, with a valuation of N851 billion ($2.04 billion) on the local bourse.

During the period, the bank’s gross loans and customer deposits rose from N2.92 trillion ($7.02 billion) and N5.34 trillion ($12.84 billion) in 2020 to N3.5 trillion ($8.41 billion) and N6.47 trillion ($15.55 billion), respectively, owing to a steady recovery in economic activity and a surge in customers’ discretionary savings.

According to the group’s audited financial filings, Zenith Bank’s profit increased by six percent from N230.57 billion ($554.24 million) in 2020 to N244.56 billion ($587.87 million) in 2021, driven by a 10-percent top-line growth.

The 10-percent growth in gross earnings in 2021 was driven by a seven-percent increase in net-interest income and a 23-percent surge in non-interest revenue, which increased from N251.75 billion ($605.12 million) in 2020 to N309.04 billion ($742.83 million) this year.

The group’s treasury portfolio was well managed, resulting in a 12-percent decrease in interest expenses from N121.1 billion ($291.1 million) in 2020 to NGN106.8 billion ($256.7 million).

As a result of the impressive financial performance, Zenith Bank’s total assets increased by 11 percent, growing from N8.48 trillion ($20.4 billion) in 2020 to N9.45 trillion ($22.72 billion) in 2021, mostly due to a growth in client deposits, while shareholder funds increased by 15 percent to N1.28 trillion ($3.08 billion).

In accordance with its dividend policy, the bank’s board suggested a final dividend of N2.80 ($0.00673) per share, which, when combined with the interim dividend of N0.30 ($0.000721) per share, takes the total distribution to shareholders to N3.10 ($0.00745) per share.

As of press time on March 1, shares in the bank were trading at N27.1 ($0.06514), up 18 basis points from their opening price on the Nigerian Exchange this morning.

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