Mr. César González-Bueno, Gulf Bank’s CEO
Gulf Bank today announced a net profit of KD 15.6 million for the first half of 2014, up 9.5% from KD 14.3 million over the same period in 2013. Operating profits before provisions were KD 53.7 million against KD 53.5 million for the same period last year. The Bank has continued its strategy to build a fortress balance sheet, increasing precautionary general provisions to KD 173 million, and by reducing the non-performing loans (i.e ‘NPL’) ratio to 5.1%. The Bank has increased the total coverage ratio of non-performing loans to over 225%.
Commenting on the results, Mr. César González-Bueno, Gulf Bank’s CEO said: “I am pleased to share with you our results for the first half of the year, which reflects the steady growth of the Bank’s revenue and net profit. Gulf Bank’s progress has been recognized by international credit rating agency Moody’s, who have upgraded Gulf Bank’s rating to Baa1 from Baa2 and the Standalone Financial Strength rating to D from D- while maintaining the Positive Outlook. In addition, Standard & Poor's (S&P) have also recently affirmed the Bank’s long-term credit rating at BBB+ with a positive outlook. Both rating agencies affirmed the Bank’s asset quality, capitalization, noting its solid revenue generating capacity, and sound risk management systems and practices.
“Our results for the first half of the year reflect Gulf Bank’s ability to grow and improve its revenues in a highly competitive market. The Bank’s loans have grown by 16.7%, and our non-performing loans ratio has fallen to 5.1%, continuing its downward trend and now approaching a long-term acceptable figure.
“We have also been awarded the ‘Best Domestic Retail Bank’ and ‘Best Human Resources Development’ awards for 2014 from Banker Middle East, which affirm our growing reputation for excellent customer service and talent development; we are aware that we must continually seek to exceed customers’ expectations, in terms of innovation and uniquely designed financial products and services, as well as continuing our investment in our Learning & Development department for the benefit of the Bank and its staff. Gulf Bank would not have received these awards were it not for the dedication of the whole Gulf Bank team. Gulf Bank will continue to focus on customer-centricity and financial discipline.”