Nigerian banking giant Zenith Bank has reported remarkable financial results for the first half of 2023, with profits soaring by a staggering 161.85 percent, propelling Jim Ovia, one of Nigeria’s most prominent bankers, to receive an interim dividend of N2.54 billion ($3.24 million) from his stake in the bank.
Ovia, recognized as Nigeria’s richest banker and a top figure in Africa’s financial services industry, stands to benefit significantly from Zenith Bank’s robust performance. The bank’s interim dividend payout follows an impressive financial showing and reflects the substantial profits earned during H1 2023.
Zenith Bank’s financial report, released recently, reveals that its profits surged from N111.41 billion ($141.95 million) in the first half of 2022 to N291.73 billion ($371.7 million) during the same period in 2023. This remarkable triple-digit percentage increase is attributed, in part, to a significant upswing in the group’s interest income, which skyrocketed from N241.72 billion ($306.4 million) to N415.42 billion ($526.6 million).
Despite incurring an impairment charge of N207.93 billion ($263.6 million) related to its financial and non-financial instruments, Zenith Bank delivered a remarkable profit in H1 2023. This achievement was buoyed by a substantial foreign currency revaluation gain of more than N355.6 billion ($451 million) for the same period.
The impressive financial performance of Zenith Bank prompted its board of directors to propose an interim dividend of N0.50 ($0.00063) per share, marking a 40-percent increase from the interim dividend of N0.30 ($0.00038) per share paid to shareholders in 2022.
Ovia, who holds a 16.18-percent stake in Zenith Bank, equivalent to 5,081,255,311 shares, stands to receive N2.54 billion ($3.24 million) in interim dividends. This significant dividend payout adds to his substantial final dividend earlier this year.
Zenith Bank’s exceptional financial performance underscores its status as a leader in Nigeria’s banking sector, while Ovia’s substantial dividend earnings reflect his prominent position in the nation’s banking and business landscape.