Unity Bank lists 78.4bn shares

 …As mgt pledges enhanced returns

Having successfully completed its rights issue, Unity Bank Plc has assured its shareholders it is now positioned to en­hance profitability.

This is even as the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) yes­terday listed a total of 78.40 billion shares from the rights issue and special placements on its daily official list.

According to the bank’s Managing Director and Chief Executive, Mr. Henry Semeni­tari, during the closing bell ceremony at the NSE, having successfully completed the rights issue, the bank would now deploy the funds towards upgrading its infrastructure and shoring up the balance sheet.

He stated that within the next few years, shareholders of the bank will not only benefit from capital appreciation but also from dividend as the funds would be used to achieve set goals.

“Dividend is a journey. It is not something that will come up immediately knowing where we are coming from but I believe that few years down the line, shareholders will not just benefit from capital ap­preciation but also from divi­dend.”

On the bank’s plan for SMEs and retail business, he said, “SMEs are our main fo­cus. If you look at our bank, our core strategies are threefold including SMEs, agriculture and rural economy. SMEs are pretty critical for our success. We have a retail franchise that will propel and propagate SME businesses across the country.”

Meanwhile, the bank’s profit before tax surged by 897.3 per cent to N12.018 billion in the nine months ended September 30, 2014 from N1.205 billion in the same period of 2013.

The results for the nine months showed that the bank grew its profit after tax by 859 per cent year-on-year to N11.057 billion from N1.153 billion, while its basic earnings per share appreciated by 553.6 per cent from N4.40 to 28.76.

Unity Bank’s gross income at N48.141 billion for the nine months to September 30, 2014 was six per cent higher than the N45.395 billion it posted in the corresponding period of last year. Its total operating income rose by 22.8 per cent from the N28.541 billion it announced for the first nine months of 2013 to N35.065 billion in the review period, while the net operating profit increased by 17.4 per cent to N32.884 bil­lion.

The results showed that Uni­ty Bank grew its total assets by 1.03 per cent to N407.793 bil­lion in the period under review from N407.629 billion as of December 31, 2013.

It also showed that the bank reduced its total liabilities by 6.7 per cent year-on-year. The total liabilities dropped from N375.416 billion to N350.389 billion.

Source : SunOnline

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