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AHLI UNITED BANK REPORTS A 14% INCREASE IN NET PROFITS TO US$68.9 MILLION FOR THE FIRST QUARTER OF 2007 Release date: 10 April , 2007 Ahli United Bank (AUB), one of the region’s leading banks, has announced a net profit, attributable to its equity shareholders, of US$68.9 million for the quarter ended 31 March 2007, an increase of 13.9% over the same period in 2006 (US$ 60.5 million). This start to the year, with yet another solid performance, is underpinned by strong regional economies in the Gulf and Middle Eastern region backed by continuing high oil prices and volumes of economic activity. The Group’s total assets at 31 March 2007 stood at US$21.7 billion, an increase of 4.2% over 31 December 2006. Loans and advances increased by 5.4% to US$9.3 billion since 31 December 2006, driven by tapping increasing business opportunities through enhanced groupwide underwriting capabilities. This was funded mainly by a growth in customers’ deposits by US$1 billion (+11.1%) to US$10 billion as compared to 31 December 2006. The resultant return on average shareholders equity at 17.7% was higher than 17.6% for the corresponding period in the prior year. Total income rose by 17.4% to US$137.4 million (Q1 2006 – US$ 117.0 million), with a cost-to-income ratio of 35.2% (Q1 2006 – 36.2%) reflecting continuing prudent cost management and control and realization of AUB group synergies. Basic earnings per ordinary share was US cents 2.3, compared to US cents 2.0 for the corresponding period in the prior year. Dilutive earnings per ordinary share, adjusted for the impact of convertible issues, was US cents 1.9 as against US cents 1.6 in 2006. “We are encouraged by our first quarter results which reflect the consistency of our performance and steady rise in our income growth year- on- year supported by our focus on sustainable earnings. Last year, we made significant progress in pursuing our strategy of organic and acquisition growth. This year, we aim to build on the successes that we have had and exceed our past achievements,” said Fahad Al- Rajaan, Chairman, Ahli United Bank. “We continue to grow and consolidate our businesses in the different countries we operate in by providing innovative banking products and services. We have the resources in place to provide customers with a comprehensive range of cross-border products and services across the region. ” “We continue to receive market recognition for our excellent performance trends with the “Best Bank in the Middle East 2007” award being conferred on us by Global Finance magazine for the second year running. It is an honour for us to be recognised for our efforts and performance ahead of all other Middle East banks,” Al- Rajaan concluded. -Ends- About Ahli United Bank Ahli United Bank B.S.C. is an offshore and full commercial banking institution based in Bahrain providing retail, commercial and investment banking business, global fund management and private banking services. It is geared towards growth through the development of a larger client base in the Gulf states and through its close partnerships with customers staff and product providers. The evolution of future mergers and acquisitions in the Gulf region remains central to the Bank’s expansion strategy. AUB reported a consolidated net profit of US$ 207.5 million for the year 31 December 2006, an increase of 25.8% compared to the same period last year. As of 31 December 2006, total assets for AUB stood at US$ 20.8 billion (31 Dec 2005 – US$ 13.9 billion) AUB has an effective holding of 75% share in the Bank of Kuwait and the Middle East (BKME). BKME has a 10% market share in Kuwait. BKME achieved a net profit of KD 45.1 million for the year ended 31 December 2006. AUB also has a 40 percent share in Ahli Bank Q.S.C. a commercial bank in Qatar with an enhanced capital base following the 100 percent participation by AUB in its capital increase Ahli Bank Q.S.C. achieved a 45.3 percent higher net profit of QR 205.7 million for the year ended 31 December 2006 compared to last year. AUB has a 10-year management contract with Ahli Bank Q.S.C. AUB also entered into a joint venture in 2004 with Bank Melli Iran and Bank Saderat Iran to form Future Bank BSC (c), a joint venture commercial bank in the Kingdom of Bahrain, with an equal one-third shareholding. Future Bank was established on 1 July 2004 with a paid up capital of US$ 99 million. Future Bank’s net profits for the year ended 31 December 2006 was US$ 16.0 million, up by 26.2% compared to last year. In 2005, Ahli United Bank acquired a 49% share in the Commercial Bank of Iraq, a private commercial banking institution established in Iraq in 1992. Since its inception, Commercial Bank of Iraq has performed consistently well and its total assets were IQD 156 billion at 31 December 2005 with a net profit of IQD 1.6 billion for 2005. Ahli United Bank, its associate banks and other Gulf financial institutions together acquired an 89.3% in Delta International Bank (DIB) in August 2006. Established in 1978, DIB is a full-fledged commercial bank offering retail banking, corporate banking, private banking, project and trade finance and treasury services. Apart from its headquarters in Cairo, the Bank has 18 branches across Egypt. During the year, AUB was awarded: “Best Bank 2006 – Middle East and Africa” (awarded by Global Finance); “Global Bank of the Year 2006 – Middle East” (The Banker); “Best Foreign Exchange Bank – Middle East 2006” (Global Finance); “Best Bank and Bank of the Year 2006 – Bahrain” (Global Finance, Euromoney and The Banker). AUB’s ordinary shares are listed on Bahrain Stock Exchange (BSE) (since August 2000) and Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) (since 26 June 2006) and are actively traded. AUB’s Class A preference shares are also listed at the BSE since 20 March 2005. AUB has been reaffirmed foreign currency long-term rating of A- and short-term rating of A2 with a stable outlook from Capital Intelligence in June 2006 and a long-term rating of A- with a stable outlook from Fitch Ratings in November 2006.
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