Shareholders of United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc are expecting the announcement of a final dividend for the 2018 financial year. This followed the approval of the bank’s financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2018.
In a notification to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), UBA said its Board of Directors last Monday approved its financial statements and payment of dividend to shareholders, subject to the approval of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
“We shall provide the details of the results and dividend payments as well as related corporate actions to the Exchange upon the approval of the accounts by the CBN,” the bank said in the notification signed by Group Company Secretary, Mr. Bili Odum.
Market operators and shareholders are highly optimistic that UBA will declare final dividend higher than what was paid for the 2017 financial year. The bank paid a total dividend of 85 kobo in 2017, comprising 20 kobo interim and 65 kobo final. It has already paid an interim of 20 kobo for the half year ended June 2018 and given its improved results for the nine months, stakeholders expect a higher final dividend for the year. UBA posted a profit before tax (PBT) of N79.1 billion for the nine months ended September 30, 2018, compared with N78.2 billion while profit after tax (PAT) improved from N60.9 billion from N61.6 billion.
Commenting on the nine months performance, the Group Managing Director/CEO, UBA Plc, Kennedy Uzoka, said: “We achieved a number of strategic imperatives during the quarter and committed more investments in the future of the business – building a solid foundation for sustainable and superior return to our shareholders.”
Also speaking on the performance, the Group Chief Financial Officer, Ugo Nwaghodoh said that despite the relative volatility in the third quarter of 2018, especially in the face of United States interest rate hikes and concerns over global trade war, which has disrupted the interest and exchange rate environment in many African countries, the bank remains on track to deliver its earnings target for the year.
He said: “We remain committed to our five-year plan of working down cost to income ratio (CIR) to 50 per cent, which we consider to be a normalised medium-term CIR. Overall, we closed the third quarter with a post-tax return on average equity (RoAE) of 16 per cent and the Group remains well capitalised and liquid, as reflected in the Group’s capital adequacy of 21 per cent and bank’s liquidity ratio of 53 per cent.”