The shareholders of Zenith Bank Plc have commended the Board of Directors for an impressive financial year ended December 31, 2015, as they approved a total dividend of N56.5 billion for the period.
The Shareholders Group said despite the challenges in the environment and the harsh economy witnessed in the country, the bank posted an impressive result.
Speaking at the event, the National Coordinator of Independent Shareholders association of Nigeria, Mr. Sunny Nwosu, said the bank had done well in 2015 by giving shareholders dividend.
He encouraged the management to maintain its good corporate governance principles, which he said had positively impacted on the bank’s profitability.
Reviewing the 2015 financial year, the Chairman of Zenith Bank, Mr. Jim Ovia said: “The bank has remains committed to delivering superior returns to our shareholders as we declared an interim dividend of 25 kobo per share and a final dividend of N1.55, bringing the total dividend for the period to N180 as against N175 per share paid the previous year.”
He noted that owing to a number of domestic and external factors, 2015 was a very challenging year for operators in the banking industry.
For the bank, total deposits was N2.33 trillion for the year ended December 31, 2015, representing an increase of 3 per cent over the previous year's figure of N2.27 trillion. Also profit after tax rose by 6.8 per cent from N92.48 billion in 2014 to N98.78 billion.
Gross earnings similarly grew by 6.6 per cent from N372.01 billion in year 2014 to N396.65 billion in 2015.
For the group, the performance indices were no less impressive. The Profit after tax jumped by 6.2 per cent from N99.45 billion to N105.66 billion while group total asset rose by 6.7 per cent, from N3.67 trillion to N4.01 trillion in 2015, while customers' deposits grew marginally by 0.8 per cent during the same period, from N2.54 trillion to N2.56 trillion.
Group shareholders fund grew by 7.5 per cent, from N552.64 billion in 2014 to N594.35 billion and gross earnings similarly grew by 7.2 per cent, from N403.34 billion in 2014 to N432.53 billion in 2015, the financial report also showed.
Ovia, however said, in the face of a very challenging operating environment, Zenith Bank has maintained its culture of outstanding performance and industry leadership.
“As a bank, we are monitoring developments both in the domestic and global economy and applying pragmatism and dynamism, as appropriate,” he said.
Also the Managing Director of Zenith Bank, Mr. Peter Amangbo, added that the bank would continue to build a strong portfolio which is an important disposition for an effective and efficient model, saying this is expected to further impact business options in line with extant dynamics and influence prospects open to the bank.