MANAMA: Al Baraka Banking Group (ABG) yesterday announced that during the first nine months of the year, it has seen total assets increasing by six per cent, financing and investment portfolio by 9pc, customer accounts by 6pc and total equity by 24pc compared with end-December 2016.
ABG deputy chairman Abdulla Ammar Al Saudi, who chaired the board meeting that approved the financials, said, “the results achieved are good by all standards, taking into account the international and regional banking situation, slowdown in economic growth in major countries and the fluctuation of currencies.”
“Our cautious and selective approach in implementing our financial and investment programmes has helped us,” he added.
Overall profitability was affected as a result of the decrease in value of local currencies in five countries where ABG operates.
Total operating income decreased by 7pc to $735 million for the first nine months from $789m for the same period last year and net operating income by 12pc to $318m from $362m for the same period last year.
Net income, in addition to the effect of the decline in local currencies, was also affected by the increase in the amount of prudential provisions, resulting in a net profit of $154m for the nine months, a decrease of 24pc from $204m for the same period last year.
Net income attributable to equity holders of the parent was $97m, down 17pc from $116m for the same period last year.
For the third quarter, net income was 32pc lower at $41m compared to $61m for the same period last year.
Net income attributable to the parent was $27m, down 24pc from $35m for the same period last year.
Total assets grew by 6pc to $24.9bn, though their growth rates were also affected by the decline in value of local currencies against the US dollar.
A large portion of these assets were maintained in liquid form to seize financing opportunities and to face fluctuations.
Operating assets (financing and investments) amounted to $19.1bn as of end-September, an increase of 9pc, when compared with $17.5bn as of end-December 2016.
Customer accounts as of end-September also increased over end-December levels by 6pc to $20.4bn, representing 82pc of total assets.
Total equity reached $2.5bn as of end-September, increasing by 24pc from end-December level.
Total equity to assets ratio reached 10pc as of end-September.
ABG board member, president and chief executive Adnan Ahmed Yousif said among many challenges during the past months, the most notable is the depreciation of currencies in some countries, which affected the growth rate of balance sheet items and income.
“We have been able to compensate for this by increasing the volume of business in the units significantly.
“We are very pleased to see the contribution of all banking units in the results of the group as evidenced by the cash dividends distributed to shareholders. We expect the results to improve next year,” he added.
“For the remainder of 2017, we expect fluctuations in markets to continue, but we will continue our investments towards maximising returns for shareholders and investors.”