Zenith Bank Plc has announced its unaudited results for the first quarter (Q1) ending 31st March 2023, with an exceptional double-digit growth of 41 per cent in gross earnings, increasing from N191.5 billion in Q1 2022, to N270 billion in Q1 2023.The unaudited statement of account submitted to the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) yesterday, indicated that the significant double-digit growth in the topline also boosted the bottom line, with the Group experiencing an impressive 27 per cent year-on-year (YoY) increase in Profit Before Tax (PBT), which rose from N68 billion in Q1 2022, to N86.6 billion in Q1 2023.
It also showed that Zenith Bank’s Profit After Tax (PAT) grew by 13 per cent, from N58.2 billion to N66 billion during the same period.The growth in the topline was propelled by substantial increases in both interest income and non-interest income.Interest income surged by 52 per cent from N126.4 billion in Q1 2022, to N191.6 billion in Q1 2023, while non-interest income expanded by 27 per cent from N57.2 billion to N72.8 billion.
The growth in interest income could be attributed to the impact of risk asset repricing, while the increase in non-interest income primarily resulted from loan recoveries and foreign currency revaluation gains.Regarding efficiency, the cost-to-income ratio improved from 55 per cent to 53.4 per cent in the current period, supported by a bolstered income line.The cost of risk also moderated from 0.8 per cent to 0.7 per cent during the same period due to an enlarged loan book. However, Zenith Bank’s cost of funding doubled YoY from 1.3 percent in Q1 2022 to 2.7 percent in Q1 2023, owing to a considerable spike in interest rates between both periods as interest expense grew from N25.8 billion in Q1 2022 to N70.8 billion in Q1 2023.
This impacted the net interest margin (NIM), which reduced from 7.3 per cent to 6.9 per cent over the same period.Total assets expanded by nine per cent from N12.29 trillion in December 2022, to N13.36 trillion in March 2023, primarily driven by growth in customer deposits and other funding sources, such as borrowings.
In addition, the results showed that in the review period, Zenith Bank’s customer deposits increased by two per cent from N8.98 trillion in December 2022, to N9.14 trillion in March 2023.Loans and advances also experienced marginal growth of one per cent from N4.12 trillion in December 2022, to N4.15 trillion in March 2023 as customers continued to adjust to the full impact of higher rates on risk assets.Both the capital adequacy and liquidity ratios remained robust at 19.5 percent and 72 per cent, respectively, with both prudential ratios comfortably exceeding regulatory thresholds.
“In 2023, the Group will maintain its focus on sustainable growth across all business segments as it restructures into a holding company, introduces new verticals to its businesses, and expands into new frontiers,” the bank explained.Zenith Bank’s consistent record of outstanding performance has garnered numerous accolades for the brand, including being acknowledged as the Number One Bank in Nigeria by Tier-1 Capital for the 13th consecutive year in the 2022 Top 1000 World Banks Ranking published by The Banker Magazine.
The bank has also received the Bank of the Year (Nigeria) title in The Banker’s Bank of the Year Awards 2020 and 2022, as well as the Best Bank in Nigeria award for three consecutive years, from 2020 to 2022, in the Global Finance World’s Best Banks Awards.