ACCESS Bank Plc has boosted the morale of its shareholders by declaring a dividend of 70 kobo per share from its operations for the year ended March 31, 2009.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that from the results submitted by the bank to the Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE), its profit after tax rose substantially to N20.814 billion in 2009.
This is against N15.853 billion achieved during the same period of 2008.
The bank's profit before taxation also appreciated to N28.1 billion, compared with N19 billion achieved in the preceding year. The bank's gross earnings also grew to N109.43 billion, as against N57.99 billion recorded in 2008.
A further breakdown of the bank's financial activities showed that its loans and advances within 12 months increased to N391.7 billion or 60 per cent, from N244.6 billion in March 2008.
On margin loans, the bank's Managing Director, Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, said that they had "taken steps since September 2008 to de-risk and de-leverage our balance sheet, thereby insulating ourselves from systemic risks emerging within the domestic market."
He said that between December 2008 and March 2009, the bank paid $1.1 billion of its foreign currency traded facilities through internally generated revenue.
Aig-Imoukhuede said that the bank's proactiveness had shown that it was strong and had capacity for sustainable growth, while maintaining its conservative risk management strategies.
He said that all through 2008, the bank had no cause to approach the expanded window of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
"The bank did not also resort to rescheduling its margin loans without recognising impairment on them as required by prudential guidelines," he added.