Al Salam Bahrain net soars to $68m
Manama, January 24, 2009
Al-Salam Bank – Bahrain said its net profit for the year ended December 31, 2008, has risen to BD25.5 million ($67.6 million) from BD23.1 million ($61.3 million) in 2007, despite the difficult market conditions that prevailed during the second half of 2008.
The Bahrain-based bank’s total assets as on December 31, 2008 reached BD554 million ($1,470 million) from BD398 million ($1,056 million) during the same period in 2007 due to solid growth in customer deposits, said a company offical.
The operating income increased to BD37.6 million in 2008 from BD32.7 million recorded in 2007. The operating expenses amounted to BD11.8 million against BD9.5 million in 2007 with the cost-to-income ratio for the year reaching 31.3 per cent.
Al-Salam Bank chairman, Mohammed Alabbar, stated that the performance of 2008 reflects the robustness of the business strategy put in place by the board and an effective implementation by management to deliver value to its shareholders.
The earnings per share (EPS) for the year amounted to 21.3 fils. The directors have recommended a cash dividend of 10 fils per share or 10 per cent of the paid-up capital, subject to approval by the shareholders in the forthcoming annual general meeting.
The shareholders’ equity of the Bank stood at BD172.5 million against BD159.5 million at December 31, 2007.
The year-end liquidity position and capital adequacy of the Bank remained extremely strong with a liquidity ratio of 40 per cent and a Basel 2 capital adequacy ratio of 24.7 per cent.
The capital adequacy ratio is net of proposed dividends and appropriations.
The Bank maintained liquid funds of over BD200 million with cash balance and reserves with the Central Bank of Bahrain of BD111 million. The Bank continues to be a net lender to the Banking system.
'The bank is taking an aggressive approach to business while maintaining a balance between profit generation and risk management,' he noted.
Alabbar pointed out that 2009 would be a very challenging year for the banking sector and the Al Salam bank had positioned itself well to overcome these challenges due to a strong and growing deposit base and a robust risk management framework.
The bank will hold its Annual General Meeting on February 22 at the Gulf Hotel.
The shareholders are expected to discuss and approve the board’s report on the bank’s activities for the year ended December 31, 2008 to receive the Shari’a Supervisory Board and the external auditor’s reports for the same period.-TradeArabia News Service