Profit After Tax Rises by 25% to N3.9 Billion
Lagos, April 20, 2015 – Sterling Bank Plc (NSE: STERLNBANK / Reuters: STERLNB.LG /Bloomberg: STERLNBA: NL) – the ‘Bank’ – a full service national commercial bank releases its unaudited results for the quarter ended March 31, 2015.

In the Bank’s quarterly update to investors and analysts, Yemi Adeola, the Managing Director/ Chief Executive, stated:
Our first quarter performance was in line with expectations having recorded a 25% growth in bottom-line earnings. This was driven by non-interest income which rose by 32% to N8.0 billion on the back of a 51% increase in fees and commission. We recorded a marginal increase in operating expenses which was slower than the growth in net operating income resulting in a 14% improvement in profit before tax. Overall, the Bank achieved a 19% pre-tax return on average equity (annualized).

During the period, we achieved a return on average assets of 2% by prioritizing efficiency in the management of our balance sheet in response to a difficult operating environment. Loan growth will remain steady and disciplined. We are very optimistic that our earnings growth momentum will be sustained in the remaining quarters of the year.

Financial Highlights

Income Statement

·  Net interest income declined by 10.8% to N9.2 billion (Q1 2014: N10.3 billion) due to an increase in cash reserve requirement which impacted negatively on earnings

·  Non-interest income grew by 31.9% to N8.0 billion (Q1 2014: N6.1 billion) driven by a 51.0% growth in fees and commission to N5.0 billion

·  Net operating income rose by 6.1% to N16.2 billion (Q1 2014: N15.3 billion) on the back of a growth in non-interest income and a 10.4% reduction in impairment charges

· Operating expenses increased marginally 3.7% to N12.2 billion (Q1 2014: N11.7 billion)

·  Profit before tax rose by 14.1% to N4.0 billion, while profit after tax rose by 24.7% to N3.9 billion due to a 68% reduction in income tax expense

Statement of Financial Position

  • Net loans & advances increased by 5.7% to N392.4.0 billion (Dec. 2014: N371.2 billion) due to our selective approach to asset creation, while Customer deposits declined by 5% to N622.2 billion (Dec. 2014: N655.9 billion)
  • Shareholders’ funds increased marginally by 4.3% to N88.4 billion(Dec. 2014: N84.7 billion) due to profit accretion
  • Overall, total assets excluding contingent liabilities increased by 2.1% to N841.9 billion (Dec. 2014: N824.5 billion)


Financial Ratios

Indicator Q1 2015 Q1 2014
Pre Tax Return on Average Equity (annualized) 18.9% 22.1%
Post Tax Return on Average Equity (annualized) 18.3% 19.6%
Return on Average Assets (annualized) 2.0% 2.0%
Earnings per Share 14k 20k
Yield on Earning Assets 13.3% 14.2%
Cost of Funds 5.9% 5.6%
Net Interest Margin 7.4% 8.6%
Cost-to-income Ratio (excluding cost of risk) 71.0% 71.9%
Mar 2015 Dec 2014
NPL Ratio 3.6% 3.1%
Capital Adequacy Ratio (Basel II) 12.7% 14.0%
Loan to Deposit Ratio (Net) 63.1% 56.6%

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