Heritage Bank declares N1.5bn profit for 2015

After its acquisition of former Enterprise Bank Plc in October 2014, Heritage Bank Plc has announced a profit before tax of N1.5 billion for the  first full operating year ended 2015.

This was contained in the audited financial statement announced by the bank for 2015.

The financial statement showed that the bank recorded Gross Earnings of N24 billion, Net Interest Income of N12.2 billion and Profit after Tax of N1.1 billion.

During the year, Heritage Bank attracted N312 billion as deposit from customers in 2015 indicating confidence in the bank. On the other hand, the bank supported businesses and individuals with N175 billion as Loans and Advances. Consequently, the bank achieved a Total Asset of N473.4 billion for the 2015 operating year.

Commenting on the result, Managing Director/Chief Executive, Heritage Bank, Ifie Sekibo said: “This result is a testimony to the increased acceptability of Heritage Bank’s innovative products and services by the banking publics. It is also a reward for the diligent commitment of the staff and management of the bank to our mission to create, preserve and transfer wealth across generations.

“In the 2016 operating year, our desire to reciprocate the patronage of our customers and goodwill from stakeholders has prompted us to introduce new and bespoke services driven by cutting edge technology, designed to empower businesses and individuals with opportunities to achieve economic prosperity.

“The positive response to these efforts gives us assurance of improved financial performance in 2016 leading to enhanced returns to our investors.”

It will be recalled that the bank was recently selected by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)  as its pilot partner to unveil, administer and manage the N3 billion Youth Innovative Entrepreneurship Development Programme (YIEDP). The  Programme is  aimed at creating  sustainable wealth and employment in the country with   focus on dependable job creating sectors such as Agricultural Value Chain (fish farming, poultry, snail farming), Cottage Industry, Mining and Solid Minerals, Creative Industry (Tourism, Arts and Crafts), and Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

Meanwhile, recent take-over of management of Skye Bank and speculations that others may soon follow, key shareholders of the bank have certified it very healthy and one of the fastest growing banks in the country, condemning deliberate attempts by certain individuals to deliberately de-market it.

At a briefing with journalists on Tuesday in Abuja, the shareholders described claims by an online media platform that the bank is owed jointly former Chairman of Skye Bank, Dr Tunde Ayeni and President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki as false.

“It is a lie that can only emanate from persons who do not wish the economy of Nigeria well”, said a leading shareholder of the bank, Alhaji Musa Ibrahim Misau, who spoke on behalf of the shareholders.

“We are thoroughly miffed by the attempt by certain persons or groups, who do not mean well for the economy of our great country and indeed the economic agenda of our dear President, to negatively target Heritage Bank, a bank that the Central Bank of Nigeria and several local and international rating agencies have ranked among the healthiest banks in Nigeria, as a struggling bank.

“This is most mischievous and totally out of order. It is a glaring case of de-marketing and we have since drawn the attention of the CBN to this very dangerous trend,” a leading shareholder of the bank, Alhaji Musa Ibrahim Misau said at the briefing in Abuja.

“For your information, Tunde Ayeni has less than one per cent share in Heritage Bank and Bukola Saraki has no shares or any form of ownership stakes in Heritage Bank. “It is not a secret that the owners and key shareholders in Heritage Bank bought off the defunct Societe Generale Bank (SGBN), which was owned by the Saraki Family.

“Saraki Family was out-rightly bought out. The family, including Dr. Bukola Saraki does not have a dime in Heritage Bank. We have in just a few years built this bank to a colossus that has become the envy of the sector and we are not going to sit by and allow ill-intentioned persons to de-market Heritage bank. No, it will not happen,” he insisted.

Decrying insinuations that CBN may be planning to sack the management and board of the bank, the shareholders said “it is so far from the truth. But you are all Journalists and have access to the CBN; please go and get the correct facts, figures and data from the CBN. I cannot imagine how normal persons can conceive and concoct such evil.

“The fact that Tunde Ayeni is a very marginal shareholder in the bank does not at all mean that what happened at Skye Bank would necessarily happen at Heritage Bank. The two banks are not in any way related, the two banks do not have similar ownership structure or management model. Tunde Ayeni obviously has marginal shares in other healthy banks in Nigeria.

“Does that now mean that the CBN would sack the management and board of these banks as well? What is the basis of the claim by this online news medium that Heritage Bank is being targeted by CBN?” queried Alhaji Ibrahim.

The CBN sources said that like most banks in Nigeria, Heritage Bank is learning to cope with the sudden decision of the Federal Government to domicile all public sector funds with the CBN under the Treasury Single Account (TSA) regime.

“Other than this sudden movement of all public sector funds to the CBN, Heritage Bank remains one of the healthiest and well managed banks in Nigeria,” the source said.

“It’s internal mechanisms and control are so strong and we are not surprised that the Bank has practically overcome the shock most banks suffered as result of the domiciliation of all public sectors funds with the CBN following the full implementation of the TSA regime by the Buhari administration,” the source disclosed.