• The Board Chairman of Ecobank Ghana, Mr Van Lare Dosoo (Middle), addressing shareholders at the bank’s AGM in Accra last Thursday, two days before he was reported dead. He is flanked on the right by the MD, Mr Ashitey Adjei, and on the left by the company Secretary, Ms Ewurabena Asafo Adjei.

Ecobank shareholders get high dividend; Chairman passes on after addressing AGM

Ecobank Ghana has increased its dividend to shareholders from 43 pesewas in 2013 to 78 pesewas per share in 2014.

This represents 83.7 per cent increase.

The bank’s share price had increased by 35.4 per cent over the last 12 months, from GH¢5.61 as at January 1 2014 to GH¢7.6 as at December 31, 2014.

This compares favourably with the growth on the Ghana Stock Exchange index of 5.4 per cent for the same period.

Financial growth

According to the Board Chairman of Ecobank, Mr Van Lare Dosoo, who reportedly died on Saturday, May 9, 2015, after chairing the bank’s Annual General Meeting on Thursday, the bank delivered a growth of 45 per cent on total income to close at GH¢857.7 million in 2014, compared to GH¢589.6 million in 2013.

“Profit before tax after impairment charges of GH¢32 million at GH¢447 million was a 67 per cent increase from 2013 and is reflective of our consistent strategy which boasts of a business model with strong focus on growing revenue and managing costs in the face of a highly competitive business environment,” he said.

He said the total income distribution revealed that 65 per cent net interest income and 35 per cent non-interest income and net interest income grew by 43 per cent to GH¢555.7 million on the back of a loan book growth of 27 per cent.

“Non-funded income continues to be a key income source for our businesses and in 2014, our net fee and commission income saw a growth of 34 per cent with trading income showing an impressive increase of 74 per cent,” he said.

He noted that strong recovery efforts coupled with a successful clean-up of the bank’s post-merger inherited loan loss provisions resulted in a 42 per cent decline in impairment charges from 2013.

“Consequently, our non-performing loans have seen significant decline to 1.78 per cent from 5.9 per cent in 2013,” he added.

He said the bank needed to take risks but balanced with return by ensuring that it had the right strategies and robust risk management systems in place to monitor and minimise these risks.

“Despite an inflation of 17 per cent and capital investments in our business, we efficiently managed our expenses to end 2014 with a cost income ratio of 44.2 per cent compared to 45.3 per cent in 2013,” he said.

“Our return on average equity and return on asset ratios currently stand at 47 per cent and 6.1 per cent respectively,” he said. 

Balance sheet 

According to him, despite a moderate estimated economic growth of 4.2 per cent the bank’s balance sheet saw significant growth of 23 per cent to GH¢5.7 billion in 2014 compared to about GH¢4.7 billion recorded in 2013.

“Customer deposit, however, grew from GH¢3.2 billion in 2013, to GH¢4.2 billion in 2014,” he added. 

He said the total customer loans at year end of 2014 stood at GH¢2.7 billion, up 27 per cent from 2013. This loan growth occurred across multiple portfolios, including Small and Medium Enterprises (SME’s), corporate, trade financing, and consumer lending.

“Loan deposit ratio for 2014 stood at 65.5 per cent same year. We continue to be well capitalised with a total equity of GH¢798.4 million, one of the highest in the industry, and a capital adequate ratio of 17.22 per cent well above the regulatory requirement of 10 per cent,” he said.

Van Lare Dosoo dead

The Executive Director of Ecobank in charge of Legal and Human Resource, Mr Morgan Asiedu announced the death of the bank’s chairman, Mr Dosoo at a dinner to celebrate Ecobank’s 25 years of operation in Ghana.

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