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For 2020 financial year, Polaris Bank Sustains Profit Growth with N28.9bn (PBT)

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…Records 4% increase in Profit Before Tax (PBT) Year-on-Year despite challenging business environment
 
…Assets hit N1.2tr and ROA of 2.4%
 
…Performance indicates management depth and sustainability
Polaris Bank Limited has released its full-year audited financial results for the year ended December 2020 posting a Profit Before Tax (PBT) of N28.9billion. The results which show the Bank’s second-year performance scorecard after two years of operation have further consolidated the Bank’s position as focused on the path of profitability, growth, and value creation.
Details of the results show that its year 2020 performance reflects a 4% Year on Year (YoY) increase in Profit before Tax (PBT). The performance according to the financial statements is driven by the combination of the significant reduction in interest expense due to the Bank’s pursuit of low interest-bearing deposits as well as lowering impairment charges on loans and other financial assets. The Bank recorded Return on Asset (ROA) and Return on Equity (ROE) of 2.4% and 29.4% respectively which favorably place the Bank as a key player in the industry. The Bank’s Total Assets stood at N1.18trillion, a 3% growth on the previous year while Shareholders Funds grew by N14billion (17%), largely attributable to internally generated profits. The Bank increased its Customer Deposits by N56billion, predominantly low-cost deposits in spite of difficult economic and industry conditions, and increased its gross loan book by N38biilion reflecting the Bank’s modest and prudent risk strategy to grow its Portfolio of Quality loans for optimal interest income generation.
Commenting on the Bank’s performance, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer (MD/CEO) of Polaris Bank Limited, Mr. Innocent C. Ike who took over in the course of the year from Mr. (now Senator) Tokunbo Abiru explained that “Polaris Bank has achieved significant milestones since its inception in September 21, 2018, when we started this journey. We have since grown to earn the confidence of the banking public, offering quality banking services at the cutting edge of technology”. Continuing, he noted, “2020 was arguably the most challenging year that the world has faced in decades owing to the negative impact of COVID-19 on businesses and the economy. Yet, the current result demonstrates the importance of the deployment of appropriate strategies, and effectively validates our recent investment in technology solutions and digitization of our products and processes,” he added.
He explained that the Bank’s subsisting three-year Corporate Transformation Plan has recently been reviewed in line with the changing operating environment and trend dynamism for sustainable value creation. Digital transformation remains one of the potent strategies to strengthen the Bank’s balance sheet, control costs, and improve processes while providing clients with wider self-service offerings.
In the view of some financial analysts, Polaris Bank’s remarkable achievements in 2020 are a testament of her consolidation of its 2019 performance, the relevance of the Bank’s new Corporate Strategy, management depth and good Corporate Governance.
The Board and Management of Polaris Bank have demonstrated strong commitment towards professionalism and business ethics by upholding sound risk management practices and proactively taking measures to ensure the Bank is on the path of value creation and sustainability. Polaris Bank’s performance in FY’20 reflects commendable improvements in key performance indicators, assuring a strong positive outlook for earnings, margins and profitability, a cautious pursuit of loan growth, a sustained strategy for operational efficiency, funding cost optimization, and efficient deposit mix. The headroom for loan creation no doubt presents an opportunity for improved margins.
Going into the year 2021 and despite the challenging macroeconomic environment, the Bank is poised to reap the benefits of its investment in both digitization and the capacity of its employees to improve service experience.

Polaris Bank is a future-determining bank committed to delivering industry-defining products, services, and digital platforms across all the sectors of the Nigerian economy. The Bank is a member of the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI), which seeks to engage the private sector and the global financial sector to help create a financial sector that serves people and the planet while delivering positive impact.

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Half-Year Performance: Transcorp Plc Shows Powerful Growth as Profit Leaps by 713%

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Transcorp Hotels

Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc (Transcorp) has released its unaudited results for the half-year ended June 2021, recording significant improvement across its major income lines.

The Conglomerate with strategic investments in the Power, Hospitality, and Energy sectors, recorded a profit after tax of N6.5bn, rising by 713% up from N0.8bn recorded in June of the previous year. Other key highlights of the result include the following:

  • Revenue rose by 53%, from N35.0bn in June 2020 to N53.3bn in the period under consideration.
  • Gross profit grew by 60%, from N14.7bn in June 2020 to N23.5bn in June 2021.
  • Profit before tax rose by 689% from N0.9bn in June 2020 to N7.1b in June 2021.

Commenting on the performance, Transcorp’s President/Group CEO, Mrs. Owen Omogiafo, reiterated the Conglomerate’s commitment towards producing long-term value and sustainable impact. “We are pleased to see the sustained growth in our group performance, which was achieved as a result of the improved performance across all the sectors we operate in. The revenue achieved in our power business grew by 48%, as a result of improved gas supply and increased generation capacity”, she stated.

Commenting on the hospitality sector, Omogiafo stated that the company’s strategic actions have resulted in a growth in revenue of up to 84%, despite the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 epidemic on the Nigerian and global hospitality industries. She expressed confidence in the company’s recovery strategies, citing the recent official launch of Aura, the company’s digital hospitality platform, as a testament to that confidence.

On the Group’s capacity to sustain its performance, Omogiafo said, “We do not plan to rest on our oars. We will continue to sweat our existing assets and explore new frontiers, as we continue to deliver on our purpose of Improving Lives and Transforming Nigeria.”

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Opinion

Rethinking safe-haven assets and building resilient portfolios with Xend Finance

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As with most things in life, feeling overwhelmed as a newbie is simple, and this is especially true in such a volatile market as the world of cryptocurrencies. Regardless of the uncertainty and worries, the world of cryptocurrency has the potential to have a unique and substantial impact on anyone’s financial stability.

Government Bonds, treasury bills, and other forms of fixed income investments are undeniably considered as safe haven investments due to their low risk, but with inflation on the increase, the question arises how safe is money locked up for a specific period of time?

It is therefore important to build a resilient portfolio able to minimize risks and mitigate volatility, diversity into multiple unrelated investments, deliver steady returns and also able to recognize changing market conditions, new opportunities and respond accordingly.
Enter the world of Stablecoins. A less volatile cryptocurrency asset pegged to a cryptocurrency, fiat money, or to exchange-traded commodities (such as precious metals or industrial metals).

Compare to other forms of cryptocurrency assets like bitcoin, or altcoins the advantages of stablecoins are stabilized by assets that fluctuate outside of the cryptocurrency space that is prices are pinned to real-world assets.
Most stablecoins are pegged to the US Dollar as they are an easy way to get exposure to the crypto space without having to worry about volatility.

You can build a resilient portfolio with stable coins by having a good foundation on which you can build and protect your investment portfolio. This is necessary to provide a buffer when the markets are volatile or things go south.

These stablecoins also provide diversification as Investor Phillips Hodges mentioned in an interview emphasized the importance of balancing factors affecting the returns you can get across the different than the classes themselves. Stable coins also provide the extra diversification a portfolio needs to stay afloat in a stormy market, minimize losses due to their low volatility.

Be rest assured as an investor that your portfolio can only said to be strong when you have investments that can stand the test of time. Inflations and rickety market conditions.
If you’re a fund manager looking to get exposure to the crypto space through stable coins, send an email to [email protected] and someone would be in touch with you.

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Market formation framework, driver to optimally develop solid mineral sector- Ifie Sekibo 

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Ifie Sekibo

MD/CEO of Heritage Bank Plc, Ifie Sekibo has said that the market formation framework is the key to optimally exploit Nigeria’s precious metal and solid minerals endowments. He disclosed this during a webinar organized by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development with the theme, “Financing the Solid Minerals Sector through the Capital Market and the Critical Role of Commodity Exchanges.”  

Sekibo explained that a fully established market formation process that would lead to having a Corporation as an integrated solid mineral institution like NNPC which allows the collateralization of assets those banks can rely on for alternative funding options.

According to him, this will guarantee other creative ways of raising funds for financing commercial activities relating to solid minerals and viable projects along its value chain.

Sekibo who was represented by the Divisional Head, Strategy and Business Solutions, of the Bank, Olusegun Akanji, said for the sector to be viable, it requires lots of converged government interventions because for any development focused sector to kick-off around the world, it needs government intervention to lay the foundation for the private sector and funders to step-in and pool their resources.

“Once, we can collateralize these assets, whether they are under the ground or being determined, you use different instruments to bring liquidity into them. Then investors will follow up once we have established there is enough they can explore.” the MD stated.

He further suggested that finance sector regulators need to expand their Prudential Guidelines to accommodate the instruments such that precious metal-backed or solid minerals-backed assets could qualify as part of the computation of liquidity ratios.

“Once banks start injecting their resources, customers would certainly follow that trend. You can start arranging for sophisticated solutions like bonds, bullion-backed assets and pension notes. Again, banks will have to be poised to hold the funding that comes from this sector; that way, they can open new transactional frontiers either locally or internationally.

“At the base of this, are the issues of pricing and integrity of the market. Once banks play in that sector and we have a government institution like the NNPC type to hold all this documentation, it would be very easy to establish price discovery on an ongoing basis. This will in turn attract international funders, hedge funds and retail investors. Today, we have retail bonds in the same way; we can have gold-backed or any of the solid mineral assets where retail investors can put in the funds,” Sekibo explained.

Meanwhile, it would be recalled that Heritage Bank Plc has said its involvement in the private sector collaboration with Dukia Gold & Precious Metals Refining Co. Limited is set to unlock the over N344 trillion market worth of gold investible instruments in the solid minerals sector.

However, he reiterated that a consistent packaged framework, which could only be held by an established government institution, as part of the layers of the framework, would help to tackle major challenges in trying to support Dukia Gold’s clients.

“With a consistent packaged framework, it will be easier for Dukia Gold and help in less spending. If Dukia Gold should speak of their challenges, they will speak about tonnes of documents they have to produce. But with a unified source of documentation, it makes the process easier and improves cost management. These are some of the challenges we have experienced in trying to support a few clients we worked with,” Sekibo stated.

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