Abu Dhabi’s First Gulf Bank (FGB) earned record net profits of Dh4.154 billion for 2012, an increase of 12 per cent year-on-year, due to higher revenues in the last quarter of the year.
In the fourth quarter net profit was Dh1.149 billion, an increase of 12 per cent year-on-year and nine per cent higher than the Q3.
Abu Dhabi’s lender showed double-digit growth in revenues of 12 per cent to Dh7.2 billion in the year, while its assets expanded more than 11 per cent to Dh175.03 billion, customers deposit also rose strongly 15 per cent to Dh114.64 billion.
Interestingly, the growth in loans and advances was much stronger when compared with other financial institutions at nine per cent to Dh114.644 in the year. Andre’ Sayegh, CEO of First Gulf Bank, attributed his performance to “the solid foundation” of the bank.
The chief executive officer said: “diversity in revenue streams has been a major factor in FGB’s strong results, aligned with the bank’s strong capital position and liquidity, providing the bank with a robust platform for future growth.”
Net interest and Islamic financing grew by nine per cent during the year and net Interest margin was maintained at 3.7 per cent.
The bank’s international branches in Singapore, India, Qatar and Libya generated Dh307 million in revenue, increasing by 163 per cent compared to Dh116 million in 2011 and increasing by 339 per cent from Dh70 million in 2010.
In a statement, to Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, FGB said strengthening the bank’s products, its sales force, the International expansion and investing in technology enhancements accounted for further cost increases, by 17 per cent to Dh1.4 billion, in the year.
The Board which met on Wednesday, proposed the distribution of a cash dividend of Dh0.83 per share, making the total proposed cash dividend at Dh2.5 billion compared to Dh1.5 billion in 2011, a 67 per cent increase over the previous year.
Abdulhamid Saeed, Board Member and Managing Director, FGB, said: “Given our current strong capital and liquidity position, we are very comfortable with the proposal. It is indeed given our current strong capital and rewarding our long term shareholders’ support and their confidence in FGB’s bright future.”
During the year 2012, the bank was successful in rising medium and long term funding to support the growth of the balance sheet and to reduce reliance on short term customers’ deposits.
The bank raised US$500 million from the regional and international capital markets in the form of a 5 year Sukuk, US$650 million in the form of 5 year Conventional Bond and US$900 million in the form of a three-year syndicated loan. The bank also raised CHF 100 million worth of three year conventional bonds during Q4 in 2012.
From Khaleej Times