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Gulf International Bank sees 4% 2011 profit lift

Bahrain’s Gulf International Bank (GIB) has recorded a net income after tax of $104.5m for last year, a 4 percent rise on 2010 revenues of $100.4m.

Figures for the fourth quarter were also positive, topping $19.9m for 2011 compared with $14.3m in the fourth quarter of 2010.

Year-on-year increases were seen in all income categories, except for net interest income, which was down 8 percent against the previous year.

GIB attributed the fall to a lower average loan volume linked with a more risk-averse internal policy, as well as a rise in the cost of term finance. However, net interest income continued to represent the firm’s main income source, worth $143.8m.

“We are delighted to report continued profitability growth in 2011 despite ongoing initiatives to de-risk the wholesale lending portfolio,” said Yahya bin Abdullah Alyahya, GIB’s CEO.

“GIB raised $900m of new term finance during the year, thereby successfully reducing the bank’s reliance on short-term wholesale funding.”

Fee-related income hit $48.5m, a rise of 15 percent on 2010, and accounted for 21 percent of the bank’s total revenues.

Trading income was valued at $17.6m for the 12-month period, $4.9m more than the year before, reflecting strong customer-related foreign exchange revenues.

Other income amounted to $17m, primarily made up of dividends received from listed equity investments and profits realised on the sale of investment securities.

The bank’s chairman said CIBs new strategy – which included the restructuring of wholesale banking activity and the launch of a new retail banking business – should secure it for strong profits and expansion in the near future.

“GIB’s new strategy… aims at a total transformation of the way the bank conducts its business,” said Jammaz bin Abdullah Al-Suhaimi.

“We believe that these measures will, within a few years, achieve the levels of profitability and return on equity in line with the expectations of our shareholders. The new institution will also benefit from more diversified stable funding, thus reducing volatility and minimising the effects of external shocks.

“I am confident that the bank is well place to take advantage of new business opportunities.”


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