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Wigwe’s Fearless Legacy: Access Holdings Reports Record N2.59 Trillion Gross Earnings in 2023 

Access Bank has announced a 100″% increase in interest income for the 2023 financial year.

Access Holdings Plc has hit another milestone with its latest financial year, announcing N2.59 trillion gross earnings in its audited financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2023.

A growth of about 87 per cent from N1.38 trillion reported in 2022, it was primarily driven by a 100 per cent increase in interest income and a 67.9 per cent growth in non-interest income. Thanks to late Herbert Wigwe’s Fearless legacy whose tenure as Managing Director of Access Bank and later CEO of Access Corporation marked a phenomenon transformation of the bank and the holdco.

The holdings on the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) recorded a robust growth in its Profits Before Tax (PBT) posting a healthy N729 billion, representing 33 5per cent year-on-year (YoY) increase from N167.68 billion declared in 2022.

The Group’s Net Interest Income also demonstrated strong performance, soaring by 93.5 per cent YoY to N695.4 billion, compared to N359.6 billion in the previous year. The yield on earning assets also rose remarkably from 9.2 per cent in 2022 to 12.8 per cent.

Access Holdings’ Loans and Advances expanded by 60.5 per cent to N8.9 trillion, accompanied by an improvement in the non-performing loan ratio, which decreased to 2.8 per cent from 3.2 per cent in 2022.

The group closed the year with N2.18 trillion in shareholders’ funds, marking a significant 77.5 per cent growth from N1.23 trillion in FY 2022.

Commenting on the performance, Acting Group Chief Executive Officer, Access Holdings, Bolaji Agbede, in a statement said: “The group’s strong performance in 2023 reflects our commitment to delivering value to our shareholders and stakeholders amidst challenging operating environments.

“The significant growth in our earnings is a testament to the resilience, strategic focus, and efficiency of our team, and reflects the diversity of our offering across banking, pension, insurance, and payments driven by robust risk management, best-in-class corporate governance, and cutting-edge technology.

“As we look ahead, we remain committed to driving sustainable growth, consolidating our footprint, and accelerating the attainment of our 2027 strategic objectives,” the acting Group CEO stated.

Access Holdings’ regulatory ratios strengthened in 2023 as Capital Adequacy Ratios for the Group, and its flagship subsidiary, Access Bank, stood at 19.01 per cent and 21.09 per cent, respectively. The Liquidity Ratio remained robust at 51.8 per cent, well above the regulatory threshold.

“As we reflect on the results of 2023, characterised by robust growth, strategic acquisitions, and expansion into key trade hubs, I am excited about the prospects for Access Bank.

“Our relentless focus on customer-centricity, digital innovation, and operational excellence has positioned us strongly to capitalise on emerging opportunities. As we enter the consolidation and efficiency phase of our Africa and international expansion strategy, we remain committed to driving sustainable growth, enhancing shareholder value, and delivering exceptional banking experiences to our customers across Africa and beyond,” the Managing Director, Access Bank, Roosevelt Ogbonna, remarked on the bank’s accomplishments.

Access Holdings’ other subsidiaries also posted strong results, as Access Pensions Limited recorded a 75 per cent growth in gross revenues, amounting to N12.3 billion, while hydrogen payment services posted an operating income of N2.1 billion and a PBT of N161 million.

Access Holdings Plc acquired Megatech Insurance Brokers Ltd. (now known as Access Insurance Brokers Ltd.) and successfully completed a $300million capital injection into Access Banking Group, which acquired several entities, including Finibanco Angola S.A., and select Standard Chartered Bank operations in Africa.
Access Bank’s UK subsidiary also opened a branch in Paris and received regulatory approval to commence operations in Hong Kong.

The group has proposed a final dividend of N1.80 kobo per share for the 2023 financial year, bringing the total dividend payment to N2.10 kobo per share with a total value of N74.6 billion.

Reiterating his confidence in the organisation’s resilience, Chairman, Access Holdings, Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede in a statement said: “As we navigate this transformative period, we remain confident in the leadership of the group to continue this upward trend and set the standard for financial service groups in the continent. Access Holdings has a rich history of excellence, and we will continue to deliver unparalleled value to our stakeholders.”

Commencing in the second half of 2024, the group’s Africa and international expansion strategy are expected to enter the consolidation and efficiency phase, aligning with the institution’s five-year plan to accelerate the attainment of its 2027 strategic objectives.

Kayode Tokede and Dike Onwuamaeze

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