With the Group posting a PBT of LKR 25.4 Bn, which incline of 5.4% examples the Group’s unwavering commitment to continue its spearheading stance as one of vision, action and impact, the 19.2% growth seen in the PAT of LKR 18 Bn, inclining from LKR 15.1 Bn further reiterates this promise.
Etching one of the many milestone it has this year, total gross income reached all-time record performance notched at LKR 144.7 Bn, a 16.9% growth compared to LKR 123.8 Bn at end 2015. Net surpluses were well evident across all aspects of investment operations with revaluation and available for sale reserves posted at LKR 11.9 Bn and LKR 0.3 Bn respectively. The Group’s Return on Average Equity was 22.7% compared to last year’s 22%, while the total contribution via taxation, special levies and dividends reflect the integral role the Group plays in national economic development, with its LKR 22.9 Bn contribution, once again considerably higher than last year’s LKR 19.5 Bn.
Chairman of People’s Bank Group Hemasiri Fernando commented that the Group’s results exampled the Group’s astute journey within the fast-evolving financial services industry, maintaining an insistent focus on every stakeholder. “Our results are self-attesting to an unrelenting pursuit to add consistent value for the benefit of all our stakeholders. Needless be said, market circumstances in 2016 were challenging and from a macro-economic stand-point, these included, inflationary pressures and a tightening monetary policy which led to a rise in interest rates and high earnings pressure.”
The multi-award winning bank locally and globally now with a prestigious ranking of being the 387th largest bank in Asia as per the Asian Banker magazine, People’s Bank’s Return on Equity stands among the top 20 in the region, while a benchmark it further etched this year was the 27.5% Return on Average Equity, which in 2015 was 27.1%. As Fernando opines, “Our successes are ultimately owed to our customers for their trust and confidence in our efforts, our regulators for their support and wise counsel and importantly our employees who consciously and very diligently push the boundaries of success and performance even amidst challenging circumstances.” This customer loyalty is well reflected in the LKR 1.1 Tn in customer deposits representing a 20% growth over the end 2015 LKR 932.9 Bn, certainly one of the highest in the country. Similarly, customer advances too touched the LKR 1 Tn mark, with a 16.6% growth over last year’s LKR 869.8 Bn, at group level.
Opining that 2016 has been a year of new highs for the bank, CEO/General Manager Vasantha Kumar says, “It’s been one of continuous positive improvement across several aspects of business operations both quantitative and qualitative. It was a year that witnessed two LKR 1 Tn feats in a single year - the first for any Bank, a gross income generating capability cross the LKR 140 billion mark, a loan book composition further improved and a gross non-performing loan ratio reaching a ten year low - the latter evidencing a further improved risk management framework and collection & recovery process.” This is well evidenced in the ten year low Gross NPL ratio of 1.9% (which in 2015 was 2.4%) highlighting the hallmark consistency that People’s Bank has continued to espouse and also a total asset base of LKR 1.4 Tn, which is an 11.6% growth over LKR 1.3 Tn at end 2015.
In analyzing the Group’s Capital Adequacy Ratio of 13% with a Tier I ratio or 11.1% and the Bank’s CAR of 12.1% and 9.8% respectively, Fernando clarifies that, “In terms of near-term goals, bolstering our regulatory capital levels remains a priority and a work in process. Ongoing discussions with the Ministry of Public Enterprise Development and the recent cabinet approval received to amend the People’s Bank act are viewed very positively in this connection.” Vasantha Kumar adds that the corporate plan of 2016-2020 forms an integral facet to this success with several new initiatives propelling the Bank towards a new era of performance and delivery capabilities. “Core to them all is Digitization,” he says, of the digitization process that began in 2015 and is well on target to be fully operational by end 2017. “Backed by technology of global repute, and a team unlike any other, this will put us on par with international counter parts in terms of our customer convenience offerings. Not complacent with our successes and conscious of the challenges that may lie ahead, we look to the future with a great degree of optimism”