Wema Bank to pay first dividend in 14 years


Wema Bank Plc has recommended to its shareholders a dividend payment of three kobo per share for the 2018 financial year, its first dividend payment in 14 years.

The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Wema Bank, Mr Ademola Adebise, said the bank recommended the dividend payment of three kobo per share in line with the board’s approved dividend policy.

In its financial statement, which was obtained on Friday, the bank posted a profit before tax of N4.8bn, a 59.4 per cent year-on-year increase from the N3.01bn recorded in the corresponding period in 2017.

The bank also recorded a growth of 47.34 per cent in its profit after tax of N3.33bn from the N2.26bn recorded in 2017.

The total assets of the bank increased from N388.15bn in 2017 to N488.53 in 2018, while its interest and non-interest income increased to N57.63bn and N13.89bn, respectively, from N53.07bn and N12.19bn in 2017.

However, the bank’s non-performing loans increased by 1.46 per cent to 4.98 per cent in 2018 from 3.52 per cent in 2017 as the cost of risk also increased to 1.34 per cent from 0.97 per cent in 2017.

Fitch, Agusto and GCR re-affirmed Wema Bank’s national long-term rating at BBB.

The statement read in part, “We opened new branches at Aba, Ilupeju, Sangotedo, while we refreshed our Lafenwa, Babcock, Warri and Egbeda branches to better serve and expand our customer base.”

Adebise said despite the challenging macro-environment, the bank delivered modest improvement at the end of the 2018 financial year.

He said the bank continued to improve on its deposit mobilisation while at the same time working down its cost of funds.

According to him, ALAT, the bank’s digital platform, which was launched in May 2017, has improved its retail liabilities and customer base as over 1,000 new customers are onboarded daily on the digital platform.

Adebise said, “The digital bank continued to receive several accolades in 2018, including the World Finance Awards for Most innovative Bank Africa and the Asian Banker Awards for Best Digital Bank Africa.

“Our vision is to get ALAT to become the premier digital platform in Nigeria. This will be driven by our expertise in the digital space and our retail partnerships.”

He added that the bank recorded other notable achievements during the year such as the successful raise of Tier-2 capital of N17bn.


Posted by Juliet Ekwebelam (Punch)

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