Zenith Bank Plc’s profit after tax of N208.8 billion, for the year ended December 2019, marks an eight percent rise from the N193 billion recorded in the preceding year. Its gross profit also rose by five percent, from N630.3 billion in 2018 to N662.3 billion in 2019.

The bank attributes the growth to a 29 percent increase in non-interest income from N179.9 billion in 2018 to N231.1 billion in 2019. It says the increase in profit before tax arose from top line growth and cost optimisation strategies. Cost-to-income ratio dropped from 49.3 percent to 48.8 percent.

The bank also reported the creation of new risk assets, with gross loans growing by 22 percent, from N2.016 trillion to N2.462 trillion.

Explaining its operation during the year, the bank said: “This was executed prudently at a low cost of risk of 1.1 per cent and a significant reduction in the non-performing loan ratio from 4.98 per cent to 4.30 per cent. Prudential ratios such as liquidity and capital adequacy ratios also remained above regulatory thresholds at 57.3 per cent and 22.0 per cent respectively. In demonstration of its commitment to its shareholders, the bank has announced a proposed final dividend pay-out of N2.50 per share, bringing the total dividend to N2.80 per share.”

Looking into the future, Zenith Bank plans to capture opportunities in the corporate and retail segments, efficiently managing costs and expanding its retail franchise by employing digital assets and innovation.