We’ll prioritise customer satisfaction to sustain our growth performance – Ecobank MD

Ecobank Ghana says it will work to sustain its strong performance in the first quarter of 2022 by placing customers at the heart of its operations, Managing Director, Daniel Sackey, has said.

“Our performance for the first quarter of 2022 has been encouraging and we expect the growth trend to remain positive but are mindful of the headwinds due to the current inflationary pressures and supply chain disruptions,” he said at the 2022 Annual General Meeting of the bank in Accra on Friday.

Mr Sackey said Ecobank Ghana sustained its financial performance in 2021 emerging as one of the most profitable banks in the country, with total revenue growing by 10 per cent to GH¢2 billion and profit before tax reaching GH¢894 million,  representing a growth of 14 per cent.

He said the growth in total revenue was mainly driven by 13 per cent increase in Net Interest Income to GH¢1.5billion and 24 per cent rise in net fees and commissions to GH¢317.6million

“This was achieved through increased volumes of earning assets, which was funded by our rather strong deposit growth of 12 per cent to GH¢13.2 billion, which was the industry’s highest for 2021,” Mr Sackey, said.

He said the bank closed the year 2021 with the largest loan book, which grew by 14 per cent to GH¢5.7 billion.

“Ecobank continues to maintain our robust risk management posture to ensure that we continue to work to maintain and improve on our asset quality matrices.  The bank remained very strong, with total assets growing by 12 per cent to GH¢17.93 billion, with Owners Equity rising 10 per cent to GH¢2.7 billion in 2021,” MrSackey said.

He said last year, just as 2020, was a challenging one due to COVID-19 and it took a toll on the operations of the bank, shareholders as well as customers.

“Notwithstanding these challenges, Ecobank delivered on its mandate as we continued to learn to live with the pandemic by offering digital solutions to our clients to ensure their safety,” he said.

“Our business clients, made up of corporate and retail banking customers, had access to our award-winning OMNIPlus and OMNILite Payment Platforms as well as over 40,000 GhQR and Point of Sale Terminals,” he said.

 Mr Sackey said “These initiatives made it possible for our customers, during the peak of the pandemic, to transact without the need to come to any of our physical locations, giving them easy access conveniently and affordably.”

The Managing Director indicated that Ecobank would invest heavily in technology and made significant upgrades to two critical platforms – Ecobank Online and Omnilite, to provide better user-experience for our Consumer and Commercial Banking customers.

Mr Sackey said Ecobank would continue to place customers at the heart of its operations and “tailor all our offerings to meet their needs.”

Mr Sackey commended the government for the measures it was implementing to deal with the challenges facing the economy such as inflation.

“While we are optimistic of a recovery in the medium-to-long term, in the near term we are committed to working with our clients to support them to navigate this difficult period.

Speaking at the AGM through a virtual platform, the outgoing Board Chair of the bank, Terence Darko, attributed the good financial performance of the bank to its primary role of focusing on customer service.

He stated that the foresight of the board, management and staff of the bank reflected in its financial performance for 2021.

“The growth was mainly driven by a 13-per cent increase in Net Interest Income and 24 percent rise in Net fees and Commission,” he said, adding that “Net trading income was down by 18 percent due to margin compressions”.

Mr Darko explained that the Net interest income contributed 75 per cent of the bank’s total revenue with Non-interest income accounting for the remaining 25 per cent.

BY DAVID ADADEVOH

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