QNB Group, one of the World's Strongest Banks and the leading bank in the Middle East and North Africa, announced its results for the three months ended 31 March 2015.
For the three months of 2015, Net Profit was QAR2.7 billion (USD735 million), up by 10.1% compared to last year. The Group's prudent cost control policy and strong revenue generating capability allowed it to maintain an efficiency ratio (cost to income ratio) of 21.7%, which is considered one of the best ratios among financial institutions in the region.
Total assets increased by 9.4% from March 2014 to reach QAR502 billion (USD137.8 billion), the highest ever achieved by the Group. This was the result of a strong growth rate of 8.9% in loans and advances to reach QAR345 billion (USD94.9 billion).
The Group was able to maintain the ratio of non-performing loans to gross loans at 1.5%, a level considered one of the lowest amongst banks in the Middle East and Africa, reflecting the high quality of the Group’s loan book and the effective management of credit risk. The Group’s conservative policy in regard to provisioning continued with the coverage ratio reaching 129% in March 2015.
At the same time QNB Group increased customer funding by 6.8% to QAR369 billion (USD101.4 billion). This led to the Group’s loan to deposit ratio reaching 94%.
Total Equity increased by 6.0% from March 2014 to reach QAR54 billion (USD15.0 billion) as at 31 March 2015. Earnings per Share reached QAR3.8 (USD1.1), compared to QAR3.5 in March 2014.
Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) calculated as per the QCB and Basel III requirements stood at 15.1% as at 31 March 2015, higher than the regulatory minimum requirements of the Qatar Central Bank and Basel Committee. The Group is keen to maintain a strong capitalization in order to support future strategic plans.
During March 2015, Fitch Rating agency upgraded QNB Group to AA-/F1+ on the back of the strength of State of Qatar's sovereign rating. QNB Group has maintained its credit rating from all other rating agencies and is considered one of the highest in the region. This is a result of QNB Group’s strong financial position, high quality of its assets and leading position in the financial sector.
As a result of the Group’s high credit ratings and outstanding asset quality, it was selected as one of the world’s 50 safest financial institutions by Global Finance.
Based on the Group's continuous strong performance and the expanding international presence, QNB improved its ranking within the Brand Finance Global Top 500 Banking Survey 2015 and is now the biggest bank brand by value in The Middle East and Africa. The QNB Ranking moved significantly from 101st (Brand Value: USD1.8 billion in 2014) to 79th (Brand Value: USD2.6 billion in 2015) further recognizing QNB's improved standing and strong brand recognition.
QNB Group is present, through its subsidiaries and associate companies, in more than 27 countries and 3 continents providing a comprehensive range of products and services. The total number of staff is more than 14,700 operating from over 630 locations and with an ATM network of more than 1,320 machines.