The FIMBank Group registered a 35% increase in its after tax-profit during 2011, to reach USD9.13 million at the end of that year. The Group’s Balance Sheet also saw considerable growth, with Total Consolidated Assets as at 31 December 2011 exceeding the USD 1 billion mark and standing at USD1.018 million, an increase of 18% over end-2010 figures. These positive indicators emerge from the FIMBank Group’s financial results for 2011, which were announced today.
The results for 2011 also show that the Group’s Operating Income after Net Impairment increased by 16% over the same period in 2010, from USD32.24 million to USD37.40 million, while Group Operating Expenses for the same period increased to USD28.92 million. Group Equity as at 31 December 2011 stood at USD125 million, up by 3% when compared to the equity levels reported at 31 December 2010, reflecting the profit performance for the year as well as the equity retention resulting from the scrip dividend approved in May last year. The Group’s Basic Earnings per Share stood at US cents 6.69 (2010 – US cents 4.97). The Directors will be recommending to the Annual General Meeting of shareholders the payment of a scrip dividend amounting to USD2,738,034 (2010: USD3,371,955), representing a net dividend per ordinary share of US cents 2.003884 2010: US cents 2.480242). Moreover, the Directors will be recommending a 1 for 25 Bonus Issue of Ordinary Shares by way of capitalisation of Share Premium.
After a reasonably optimistic start to 2011 and the hope that wide-ranging monetary and fiscal measures across major economies could help revive confidence in international trade and bring back some stability in the financial markets, the political turmoil that spread across North Africa and the Middle East once more brought caution to the fore. This scenario provided the background to the FIMBank Group’s performance during 2011.
Commenting on the Group’s performance and the current outlook, President Margrith Lütschg-Emmenegger said that while 2011 had proved once more the Group’s ability to navigate the troubled waters of prolonged economic difficulties in the major developed countries, coupled with political unrest in key markets, 2012 should bring much needed signs that the worst may indeed be over: “FIMBank has a proven track record of turning troubled times into opportunities, and 2011 was no exception. In a global scenario characterised by instability, FIMBank’s business model, built and refined over the years, has enabled us to continue successfully identifying opportunities in a diverse range of product niches and geographical markets. However, current market conditions also continue to call for prudence, attention to strong risk management, compliance and focus on doing what the Group knows best – trade finance in emerging markets”.
She explained that 2012 will also start to see the business landscape affected by the onset of Basle III, an international regulatory framework for banks which in the coming years will introduce more stringent requirements, particularly for capital adequacy and liquidity: “Despite these challenges”, said Ms Lütschg-Emmenegger, “the FIMBank Group has now established a wide and diversified product range which, driven by strong business fundamentals, will continue to provide it with opportunities to grow and profit”.