Standard Chartered Bank Ghana Limited says it will continue to drive sustained profitable growth in 2018 on the back of strong economic growth and improved external conditions.
Mrs Mansa Nettey, Chief Executive of Standard Chartered Ghana, speaking at the annual general meeting, said the bank had made good progress in 2017, putting the business back on upward growth trajectory.
The growth was underpinned by deepening client relationships, investment in technology and strengthening of the control environment.
She said the bank’s outlook for 2018 remained positive and that the bank was committed to driving income growth to sustain the momentum over the last couple of years and increase returns in the medium term.
“Going into 2018, we remain committed to efforts and initiatives that would help us aggressively drive top line growth. We will focus on being the right partner to government, corporate and individuals by delivering on our ratings advisory, capital markets, differentiated wealth management advisory and e-solution capabilities,” Mrs Nettey said.
The bank in 2017 posted strong financial results with underlying operating income of GH¢676.8 million, up nine percent over previous year of GH¢620.9 million.
Also, profit before tax was GH¢422.3million, representing 22 percent increment over last year with earnings per share at GH¢2.44, up 27 percent from GH¢1.92.
Operating expenses increased by 26 percent to GH¢244.9million compared to prior year of GH¢194.1million while impairment charge of GH¢9.5million was 88 percent better than prior year position of GH¢81.1million.
Mrs Nettey said the bank would deepen holdings across the value chain in strategic industries of manufacturing, infrastructure, energy and oil and gas while driving untapped ecosystem banking potential.
Commenting, the Board Chairman Mr Ishmael Yamson, said the resilient financial performance was a testament to the disciplined execution of the Bank’s strategy of maintaining a strong balance sheet, improving profitability, and driving operational efficiencies.
“The Board is confident of the Bank’s ability to seize the right opportunities for growth while effectively responding to the challenges that can potentially undermine the Bank’s performance,” he said.
Mr Yamson said recognising that high standards of corporate governance was fundamental to sustainable growth, the bank had continued to focus on ethical banking through a robust conduct management framework.
“Clients may sometimes feel frustrated by the rigid enforcement of governance by our bank, but overtime it has become clear to our clients, investors, employees and stakeholders that a robust environment is a safer place to do business and we must all be proud of our bank,” he said.
Meanwhile, shareholders have approved a special resolution to transfer GH¢302 Million from the Company’s Income Surplus to Stated Capital in a move to ensure compliance with GH¢400 million minimum capital requirement announced by the Bank of Ghana.
The shareholders also approved the Board’s recommended bonus shares of one share for every six shares held.