Access Bank Plc, a full-service commercial bank operating in Nigeria, Sub-Saharan Africa and the UK, has released its audited results for the first half ended 30 June 2015, showing positive growth in financial indices.The Group recorded a strong performance in the first six months of the year, re-asserting its capacity and resolve to deliver strong returns in spite of a tighter operating environment.

In the audited financial results released to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Access Bank recorded gross earnings of N168.3 billion, representing an increase of 43% over the N117.9 billion recorded in the same period in 2014. The Bank proposes an interim dividend of 25Kobo per share.

Growth in gross earnings was boosted by an 18% increase in interest income to N98.9bn in the first half of 2015 from N83.6 billion in the
comparative period of 2014. The Group posted a profit before tax of N39.1 billion which rose by 44% from N27.1 billion in 2014. Profit after tax was up 39% in 2015 to N31.3 billion, compared to N22.6 billion in half year 2014.

There were also increases in other financial indices; non-interest income rose 101% to N69.4 billion in 2015 from N34.6 billion in 2014; Operating income of N17.6 billion grew by 42% in half year 2015 compared with N83.1 billion in the corresponding period of 2014 and Return On Average Equity (ROAE) of 21.6% in 2015, from 16.5% in FY 2014.

Commenting on the results, Herbert Wigwe, Group Managing Director stated: “The results reflect the Bank’s concerted efforts to deliver on its growth objectives for 2015. The first half of the year was defined by significant macro-economic and policy headwinds with major impact on all aspects of our business.

The group despite those challenges reported improved profits in the first half of the year with significant contributions from our securities trading business.

We are particularly pleased with the strong support from our shareholders as they exercised their Rights during the recently concluded Offer which raised N41.8 billion. The successful Capital Raise underscores the overwhelming support of our shareholders and their belief in Management’s ability to deliver long term value.

With our capital position secure, our priority will be to focus on; driving migration of our customers to alternative platforms to boost profitability of our channels; implementing our customer service improvement initiatives; generating low-cost liability from continued engagement with customers; growing risk assets by deepening market share in target sectors; optimising and improving penetration of our customers’ value chain and driving operational efficiency through cost containment and procurement optimization measures.”