Shareholders of United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc have approved the Board’s proposal to pay a dividend of N1.10 per share for the financial year ended December 31, 2022.
The shareholders gave their approval at the bank’s 61st Annual General Meeting (AGM) which was held virtually on Thursday, April 27th.
The bank had earlier paid an interim dividend of 20 kobo per share during the 2022 half year, while a dividend of 90k was declared at the end of the 2022 financial year bringing the total of N1.10 per share.
In his address, UBA Group Chairman, Tony Elumelu, took time out to appreciate shareholders who have stood by the bank in the past years, as he noted that this continues to encourage the board to do more.
Elumelu said, “We appreciate all our regulators, customers and shareholders who have partnered with us in this exciting journey of growth, and in 2023, we hope to do even better than we did in the year 2022. We have therefore prioritised our plans for the year which is very clear – it is all about execution, especially as this year marks a significant milestone for the group.”
At the end of the 2022 financial year, UBA delivered gross earnings of N853 billion, up 29.2% on the prior year, and an operating income of N593 billion, representing an increase of 33.8% from N443 billion in 2021. Profit Before Tax increased by 31.2% to N201 billion from N153 billion recorded in 2021 while Profit After Tax rose by 43.5% to close the year at N170 billion from N119 billion in 2021. In line with the bank’s overall objective of stimulating growth in the real sector, the bank grew its loan portfolio by N605 billion, or 21.4%, from the prior year.
UBA’s Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Oliver Alawuba, who spoke on plans to consolidate the bank’s investments in Africa, said, “We are positioned to take Africa to the world and bring the world to Africa through capital, investment funds, trade flows and remittances flows’’
“We also remain focused on simplifying trade and cross-border payments across the continent with UBA as one of the leading banks championing the Pan-African Payment and Settlement System (PAPSS), an AfCFTA agenda and brainchild of Afreximbank which is currently operating in six pilot countries in West Africa – Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Liberia and Gambia,” Alawuba stated
He explained that UBA remains on the trajectory of achieving and even surpassing its targets for the 2023 financial year, adding, “We continue to maintain a close focus on cost efficiency and strictly control operating expenses across the group, including our new strategic investments. We are committed to delivering improved performances in the years ahead.”
A shareholder, Faruk Umar, who spoke at the meeting, commended the bank for the excellent results which culminated in a good dividend payout.
“I am very impressed by the growth in our bank’s earnings which is now very competitive; and which goes to show that our share price is currently grossly undervalued. We are happy that the bank’s presence is strengthened with its wide spread into the African continent, and we are sure that the dividend will increase next year,” he said.
Another shareholder, Olatunde Akinade, who also praised UBA for the impressive performance, took time to commend the management for the gender equality and large female representation on its board.
“We are happy to note that we have a higher female representation on our board, even higher than their male counterparts. It shows that UBA is a listening financial institution that walks the talk when it speaks about female empowerment. This is indeed laudable,” he said.
United Bank for Africa is one of the largest employers in the financial sector on the African continent, with 25,000 employees group wide, and serving over 35 million customers globally. Operating in 20 African countries and in the United Kingdom, the United States of America, France and the United Arab Emirates, UBA provides retail, commercial and institutional banking services, deepening financial inclusion and implementing cutting edge technology.