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Nigerian Breweries Promotes Talent through Lagos International Poetry Festival

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Nigerian Breweries Plc, the leading brewing company in the country, has demonstrated its strong commitment to the promotion of intellectual talent through the sponsorship of the Lagos International Poetry Festival, which attracts poets from across the world.

The five-day festival, the fourth in the series, with the theme “Wide Awake”, got off the ground on Wednesday, October 31, 2018, at the Freedom Park, Lagos.

Managing Director of Nigerian Breweries Plc, Mr. Jordi Borrut Bel said that, in line with the company’s philosophy of “Winning with Nigeria”, it recognised that the arts play an important role in the strengthening of the cultural values of the society.

Borrut Bel stated that the sponsorship of the Lagos International Poetry Festival remains a significant part of a broad spectrum of NB Plc’s initiatives, which cover areas such as health, water, education, talent development and youth empowerment.

He affirmed that poetry is a tool for the reengineering of society towards the objective of achieving progress, explaining that it does not only interpret society or serve as its mirror, it also helps the people to imagine better ways of living together.

“With the sponsorship of this festival since its inception in 2015, we believe we can help to contribute to the breeding of young, emerging talent, engender conversations on critical issues and create a shared performance space for poets across the country and the world,” he said.

This year’s theme examines the rousing wave of discontenting voices that tip political and social power structures from the global North to the South and reinvigorate conversations on accountability, transparency and social justice.

On his part, the Founder/Director, Lagos International Poetry Festival, Mr Efe Paul Azino commended Nigerian Breweries for the enormous resources put together to make the festival a success, like it did in the past editions.

He stated that in the past four years, the Lagos International Poetry Festival has had 24 workshops and over 250 guests that have amazed the audiences through poetry.

Azino explained that part of this year’s edition is to remember tradition and bring the old and young poets together to express their voices on contemporary issues.

During the opening ceremony, Lebo Mashile, the edition’s Poet-in-Residence from South Africa, thrilled the audience with performances that portray Africa’s social and ethical values.

Over the years, Nigerian Breweries has sponsored several art focused initiatives such as the partnership with the African Artists’ Foundation to sponsor the National Art Competition, the Farafina Trust to sponsor the Creative Writers’ Workshop as well as the recently concluded Heineken Lagos Fashion and Design Week.

 

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GTBank Releases Q1 Unaudited Results, Reports Profit Before Tax Of N57.0Billion  

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Guaranty Trust Bank plc has released its unaudited Financial Results for the quarter ended March 31, 2019, to the Nigerian and London Stock Exchanges.
The Bank recorded positive performance across all financial metrics with gross earnings for the period growing by 1.2% to ₦110.3billion from ₦109.0billion posted in March 2018. Profit before tax improved to ₦57.0billion from ₦52.6billion recorded in the corresponding period of March 2018, representing a growth of 8.3%.
Customers’ deposits also rose by 6.0% to ₦2.410trillion in March 2019 from ₦2.274trillion in December 2018, whilst the Bank’s Loan book grew by 1.6% from ₦1.262trillion as at December 2018 to ₦1.282trillion in March 2019.
Balance sheet remained strong with the Bank closing the quarter ended March 31, 2019 with Total Assets of ₦3.556trillion and Shareholders’ Funds of ₦627.2Billion.
In terms of Assets quality, NPL ratio and Cost of Risk closed 7.03% and 0.05% in March 2019 from 7.30% and 0.34% in December 2018 respectively.
In addition, coverage for NPL stood at 90.12% while Full Impact Capital adequacy ratio remained very strong, closing at 22.25%. On the backdrop of this result, Post Tax Return on Equity (ROAE) and Return on Assets (ROAA) closed at 32.79% and 5.76% respectively. These indices are pointer to GTBank’s strategic positioning in Nigeria and other Countries where the Group operates.
Commenting on the first quarter results, the Managing Director/CEO of Guaranty Trust Bank plc, Mr Segun Agbaje, said; “Going into 2019, we knew that it would be a challenging year, but our strategy and unwavering focus on delivering value for our customers and shareholders continues to underpin our ability to consistently deliver solid results despite changing market variables. We carried on the momentum of the previous year, posting strong growth in earnings, effectively managing costs and leveraging our digital-first customer-centric strategy to deliver world-class services that are simple, cheap and easily accessible.”
He further stated that; “Whilst ensuring the long-term growth of our business is the greatest value that we can create for our communities, we are also leveraging our resources, expertise and network to help people thrive. That’s why, from April 28 to May 1, 2019, we are organizing the biggest food and drink festival in Africa to give small businesses in the food industry the platform, network and access to the markets that they need to grow.”
GTBank has continued to be best in class in terms of Profitability, Efficiency and Capital among Peers and other Financial Institutions in Nigeria. This is evidenced by its Earnings per Share of ₦1.74, Return on Equity (ROAE) of 32.79%, Cost to Income Ratio of 38.64% and Capital Adequacy of 22.25%.
These metrics are a testament to the efficient management of the Bank.
In recognition of the Bank’s bias for world class corporate governance standards, excellent service delivery and innovation, GTBank has been a recipient of numerous awards over the years.
Some of the Bank’s recent awards include 2018 Bank of the Year – Nigeria from the Banker Magazine and 2018 Best Banking Group and Best Retail Bank Nigeria from World Finance Magazine.
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Zenith Bank Plc Sustains Market Dominance with Improved Profitability

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Zenith Bank GMD, Peter Amangbo, arrested

 

In the first quarter ended 31 March 2019, Zenith Bank Group recorded improved numbers across key metrics, driven by a solid performance in all business segments. This resulted in a Profit before Tax (PBT) of ₦57 billion, representing a 6% growth over the ₦54 billion achieved in the corresponding period in 2018. The Group’s on-going commitment to cost optimisation on the income statement and statement of financial position ensured earnings per share increased by 7% to ₦1.60 compared to Q1 2018.

The growth in net interest income and operating income by 23% and 1% respectively mitigated the decline in gross earnings. The effective management of cost-to-income ratio, cost of funds and cost of risk offset top-line declines to deliver an enhanced operating income in the period.

Our risk and asset quality continues to improve as cost of risk dropped significantly by 52% from 0.9% in the prior year to 0.4% for the period. This was achieved as impairment charges declined by 54% (₦2.5 billion year on year reduction). Our cost of funds also improved, declining by 25% from 4% in Q1 2018 to 3% at quarter-end. This was supported by a 22% decrease in interest expense of ₦10 billion over the same period, affirming the Group’s robust treasury and liquidity management. Our prudent cost management led to a 5% decline in our cost-to-income ratio by 5% from 53.3% in 2018 to 50.9% in the period with an absolute reduction in operating expenses by ₦2.3 billion year-on-year.

The Group’s retail franchise continues to increase as retail deposits grew by N80bn between December 2018 and March 2019 representing a 9% growth notwithstanding the fact that total customer deposits dropped marginally by 3%. The drop in customer deposits was as a result of rebalancing of the deposit mix as expensive purchased deposits were forgone in favour of cheaper and stickier retail deposits.

The volume and value of transactions across our electronic and digital platforms continue to grow as new customers are being acquired. Our balance sheet continues to strengthen as liquidity ratio is at 66.7%, loan to deposit ratio closed at 43%, and capital adequacy ratio ended the period at 25% respectively and remain above the relevant regulatory thresholds as at 31 March 2019.

Going into the rest of the year and with improving economic fundamentals, we are confident of delivering value to all our stakeholders on our commitments even as we create more opportunities for businesses by supporting them through selective risk asset creation. We shall continue our investments in the retail segment of the market as we consolidate our leadership position in the corporate segment while maintaining a strong balance sheet.

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A Woman’s Signature goes on Naira for the first time in 59 years

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Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN has broken history, as a woman’s signature first time in Nigeria’s 59-year history, is inscribed on the Naira.

Priscilla Ekwere Eleje, who has been acting director of currency and operations at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has been confirmed, substantive director of the apex bank.

She is the first female director of currency in the history of the bank, and her signature has been appended on the naira — breaking another glass ceiling.

Ladi Kwali, Nigeria’s foremost potter, is the only woman on the naira, taking a spot at the back of the N20 note.

Every naira note in the country’s history — save the N20 note — has had the face, name, and signature of a man, up until now.

Insiders at CBN revealed that the Godwin Emefiele, the governor of the bank, has been working to ensure more women come to the table at the bank.

TheCable also learnt that she was confirmed on August 30, 2018, and currencies printed afterwards would carry her signature.

Sarah Alade has been the closest woman to this feat, rising to become the deputy governor of the CBN after as she was appointed the head, fiscal analysis division of the CBN at the turn of the millenium.

Alade, who — though in acting capacity — became the very first female governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), retired on March 22, 2017, after leading at the bank in various capacities.

Aishah Ahmed was appointed to replace Alade in 2018.

 

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