Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 11 December 2019

First Abu Dhabi Bank reports 'solid' third quarter profit

Bank plans to open its second Saudi branch at Khobar in the Eastern Province soon

First Abu Dhabi Bank, the UAE’s largest lender by assets, reported a 3 per cent year-on-year rise in its third quarter net profit. Chris Whiteoak / The National
First Abu Dhabi Bank, the UAE’s largest lender by assets, reported a 3 per cent year-on-year rise in its third quarter net profit. Chris Whiteoak / The National

First Abu Dhabi Bank, the UAE’s largest lender by assets, reported a 3 per cent year-on-year rise in its third quarter net profit, beating analysts’ estimates on higher operating income.

Net income for the three-month period to the end of September rose to Dh3.11 billion, the lender said in on Thursday. Operating income climbed 5 per cent year-on-year at the end of third quarter to Dh5.07bn.

Net interest income during the third quarter of the year increased to Dh3.33bn, compared to Dh3.26bn in the same period last year. Expenses rose to Dh1.4bn, up from Dh1.3bn last year.

“Our financial results for the third quarter of the year reflect a solid performance characterised by the effective execution of our strategy to drive growth and transformation as we remain firmly on track to unlock our full potential,” said Abdulhamid Saeed, group chief executive of FAB.

Net impairment charges during the quarter rose 8 per cent year-on-year to Dh469.5m. Loans and advancements increased 7 per cent year-on-year during the third quarter to Dh378bn, whereas customer deposits increased 5 per cent to Dh477bn.

The bank’s total assets at the end of September 30, reached Dh788.16bn, up 6 per cent since the end of 2018.

In the first nine months, the bank’s net profit and operating income both grew 4 per cent, to Dh9.44bn and Dh15.17bn, respectively. Net interest income remained flat at Dh9.74bn.

The bank is continuing to implement its international growth strategy in targeted markets such as Saudi Arabia, where it will open its second branch in Khobar city soon, it said.

“Despite a more challenging global and regional outlook, we remain on a solid track to achieve a record performance in 2019, and maximise shareholder returns,” Mr Saeed said.

“We are entering the last quarter of 2019 with a robust balance sheet, strong capital and liquidity ratios, stable asset quality, and improved returns,” he added.

The bank, formed through the merger of National Bank of Abu Dhabi and First Gulf Bank in 2017, is at the forefront of Abu Dhabi’s economic development efforts and is supporting the government’s Ghadan 21 stimulus.

FAB will be the sole operator of the Dh9bn set aside for SMEs under the government’s economic stimulus package, Salil Ahuja head of product portfolio and value propositions at FAB’s business banking, told The National earlier this year.

The bank is aiming for double-digit growth in its SME business this year and plans to increase its share of the UAE’s SME market to beyond 20 per cent by 2020.

Updated: October 24, 2019 07:15 PM

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