Bank of Sharjah announced a 51 per cent increase in net profit posting AED 44.3 million for the first three months of 2005 compared to AED 29 million the previous year. Loans and advances grew by 53 per cent from AED 1.6 billion to AED 2.4 billion, while customer deposits posted a 20 per cent increase to reach AED 2.4 billion on March 31, 2005 compared to 2 billion during the same period of last year.
“Our continuing high performance stems from effective balance sheet management and providing unrivalled, value-added services for our customers. The bank’s performance across all business segments is in line with our targeted growth for the year,” said Varouj Nerguizian, General Manager, Bank of Sharjah.
Bank of Sharjah also reported a 33 per cent increase in share capital over 2004 from AED 750 million to AED one billion through a rights and equity share issue. The capital increase was funded in the form of a 13.33 per cent bonus issue, equivalent to AED 100 million, and a rights issue for AED 150 million with a premium of AED 1 per share. The bonus issue yielded AED 0.73 gain per share for existing shareholders.
“The decision to increase the bank’s share capital was adopted recently during our annual general assembly, and by the 5th of March, we had invited our shareholders to subscribe. It was extremely agreeable to see that 99.61 per cent of the new shares were immediately subscribed to and by the end of March one billion shares were already on the market.”
After the capital increase, the market capitalisation jumped from AED 3.4 billion to AED 4.4 billion, a growth of 29 per cent. Shareholders funds now stand at AED 1.4 billion, up 49 per cent from AED 0.9 billion in the first three months of 2004.
“Due to optimal balance sheet usage and prudent interest rate risk management, all profitability indicators have improved this year. This reinforces the bank’s role as a conservative institution; we are committed to consistently adding value to our customers, staff, shareholders and the community,” concluded Nerguizian.