Zenith Bank Plc for the past three years have maintained a strong and recognised position in the banking sector, even though it seemed the year 2012 was a shaky one, the bank still managed to come out with a good profit. Not holding it back, Zenith bank intends to do what no bank has done before by assuring to achieve a N2 trillion deposit base in the year 2013.
Addressing the elites at the Bank’s 22nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Lagos, Managing Director/CEO, Zenith Bank Plc, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, said, “The year 2012 was quite challenging for the industry, but Zenith Bank consolidated on the steady progress recorded in year 2011.
“We will continue to improve as we strive to reach the N2 trillion mark on deposit base by year 2013. We are now in a position to surpass our present performance. The operating results of 2012 indicated an impressive performance in all parameters giving credence to the increasing market share and acceptance of our brand by Nigeria and international banking public.”
The Chairman of Zenith Bank, Sir Steve Omajafor, humbly appraised the shareholders at the meeting for their loyalty and contribution towards the growth of the bank.
According to him, “Owing to a number of domestic and external factors, 2012 without any doubt was very challenging one for operators in the banking industry. However in line with our track record, Zenith Bank recorded total deposit base of N1.80 trillion for the year under review, representing a 14 per cent increase over the previous year’s figure of N1.58 trillion.
“Profit After Tax (PAT) similarly surged by 132 per cent from N41.30 billion in 2011 to N95.80 billion in 2012. Total assets grew by 12 per cent, from N2.17 trillion to N2.44 trillion, while shareholders’ fund rose by 18 per cent, from M372.02 billion to N438 billion.”
Furthermore, he said, “The future of the bank is bright. We thank you our shareholders for your positive comments as it serves as a source of encouragement to do better.”
In all mutual respect, Some of the shareholders at the meeting also had the time to appreciate the impressive performance held by the bank, as well as its listing on London Stock Exchange (LSE).
Dr. Faruk Umar, Chairman, Advancement for Rights of Nigerian Shareholders said, “We commend the bank for its results and listing on LSE. This has given our bank more recognition since its shares are traded in international market and we hope for better performance.”
Also, Sir Sunny Nwosu, National Co-ordinator, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), who spoke for his group said, “ We thank you for the impressive performance recorded for the financial year 2012. It is a good one in all ramifications, but the task ahead of the bank is how to manage and sustain success.”
The move by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to impose compulsory electronic dividend payment in the nation’s capital market is frowned upon by the bank’s shareholders.
This led Sir Sunny to warn regulators to be cautious of the kind of policies they initiate, saying, “ We the shareholders will totally resist any attempt by SEC to impose sanction on any shareholder who fail to comply with electronic dividend payment requirement”.