FirstRand Namibia this week announced its results for the year ended 30 June 2022. The group delivered normalised earnings of N$1.86 billion exceeding peak 2016 earnings by 6.7%. Economic profit (NIACC) increased over the year, and Namibian shareholders will receive nearly 40% of dividends amounting to N$298m into local coffers. This is especially pleasing as local shareholders, including local pension funds as the group’s largest local shareholding block, welcome support in continuing to ensure benefits to Namibians countrywide.
“The value creation for shareholders is a testament to the quality of the group’s operating businesses, FNB, RMB, WesBank Ashburton and Pointbreak. The group’s franchise businesses showed growth in normalised pre-tax profits (PBT), driven by operational resilience and successful execution of their respective growth plans,” read a statement from the group.
FNB delivered profit before tax (PBT) growth of 19%, with its return on equity (ROE) improving to 21.4%. Key drivers of the performance included a strong rebound in nominal interest rate (NIR), coupled with a significant reduction in year-on-year impairments. Pre-provision operating profits increased 6.2% and now exceed FNB’s pre-pandemic levels.
RMB grew PBT by 5.5%, driven by a robust underlying operational performance across its portfolio, with solid contributions from investment banking, markets and private equity.
The group further reported that Ashburton Investment’s strategy is making good progress and the business under new leadership is poised to deliver increasing value locally. Ashburton’s future prospects to disrupt the traditional asset management market and create access to more investment opportunities for all Namibians, will create significant shared value.
Furthermore, financial inclusion and innovation, new product launches and digital self-service ease and convenience, delivered good performance in customer growth and the scaling of the deposit franchise - correlating well with strong positive feedback from customer satisfaction and brand health surveys in the year under review.
“FirstRand Namibia, as a holding group, continues to play a valuable role enabling the customer-facing businesses to deliver on their strategies, with Group Treasury’s resource management strategies significantly adding to shareholder value,” the statement added.
Coming out of the pandemic, the group offers a strong balance sheet for investor consideration and remains conservatively provided. Accreted capital enabled the group to reward shareholders with an attractive yield, especially valuable in an inflationary environment. FirstRand Namibia also stated it has ample financial resources to support future growth ambitions, driven by its commitment to help build a globally competitive Namibia.
Commenting on the strong results, group CEO Conrad Dempsey noted, “Our people remain our greatest strength. The talent and commitment from everyone to do what matters, to customers, communities and the nation, is the driver of positive and inspirational results. Our clients are the reason we exist today, and the clients and investors of our future, will be the beneficiaries and partners to Namibia’s growth.”
Oscar Capelao, group CFO, added: “Namibia’s potential is vested in the growth of its businesses, its partnerships with the sovereign and the financial inclusion and wellbeing of its people. The group’s results are a feature of strong relationships with customers and investors, and the ability to embrace change to enhance inclusion and growth digitally. Ongoing investment locally into systems, tech solutions and the development of local expertise will continue to feature as a driver of solid results.”