…records GH¢2.7million profit as at August 2021
Odotobri Rural Bank Limited at Jacobu in the Amansie Central district of Ashanti Region is making a strenuous effort to put the bank back on the path of growth and profitability.
The bank, after devising an operational strategy for growth, has recorded an unaudited profit of GH¢2.7million as at the end of August 2021.
The bank is doing everything possible to retrieve locked-up funds and recover overdue loans to control the wearing-away of profit by highly expected credit loss as part of the growth strategies. The Board is sparing no effort to improve loan quality portfolio of the bank, which ill in turn boost its profitability and reduce expected credit loss.
To cement and achieve the primary objective behind this growth initiative with operational efficiency, the Board has set up a recovery unit under the credit department to spearhead credit recoveries of the bank to help improve loan portfolio quality.
The Chairperson of the Board of Directors, Mrs. Georgina Addea, gave these assurances and more at the bank’s 34th Annual General Meeting of shareholders recently at the Nana Adu Darko Community Centre at Jacobu in Ashanti.
According to the Chairperson, Ghana’s economic momentum was greatly curtailed by the global COVID-19 pandemic that led to global lockdowns and its associated economic meltdowns across the globe – of which Ghana is no exception.
The growth rate of real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) decelerated from 6.5% in 2019 to 1.7% in 2020 due to a slump in oil prices and weakened global economic activities.
Inflation went up due to pandemic-related interventions such as acquisition of unexpected health-related personal and protective equipment (PPE), and expansionary monetary policies by the Bank of Ghana aimed at mitigating the adverse impact of revenue shortfalls and global supply chain bottlenecks. Fiscal deficit went up from 4.8% in 2019 to 13.8% in 2020.
Odotobri Rural Bank for a considerable period in 2020 had to run a shift system as the recommended approach to help curb the possible spread of COVID-19 in the bank and among its stakeholders. Some branches were closed temporarily due to restrictions and lockdowns, all aimed at curbing COVID-19. Customers’ businesses were significantly affected, making loans repayment difficult. The year 2020 experienced continuous declines of interest rates in the financial landscape.
In spite of the challenging macroeconomic environment coupled with an unprecedented pandemic that pertained during the reviewed year, the bank managed to pull yet another satisfactory operational performance in almost all financial indicators in 2020 – as indicated in the table.
Significantly, however, the bank recorded a technical loss of GH¢2,098,806 in 2020, representing a decline of 397.34% from the 2019 financial year. The loss was the result of expected credit loss on loans and investment made in line with IFRS. The bank’s lending rates on loans and advances were reduced in the year under review.
The bank’s stated capital exceeded the regulatory requirement at end of the year 2020. Indeed, the bank recorded a total paid-up capital of GH¢2.97million as compared to GH¢2.94million in 2019 – representing a slender growth of 0.98%. Even exceeding the minimum threshold over 198%, the shareholders have been encouraged and advised to buy more shares to secure their ownership with the bank.
The Board has over the years proposed and actually paid a substantial dividend on shares to shareholders annually. Unfortunately, due to the estimated impact of COVID-19 on banks in general, the Bank of Ghana directed all banks and deposit-taking institutions not to declare dividends for 2019 until further notice. In complying with the Bank of Ghana directive, and given the technical loss realised in the year under review, the Board of Directors did not propose dividend for the year 2020.
Meanwhile, the board has assured shareholders that effective measures will be put in place to pay good dividends when the directive on declaration of dividends is lifted.
Corporate Social Responsibility
In spite of the uncertainties surrounding the pandemic and losses recorded in the year under review, the bank continued to initiate and support projects under its corporate social responsibility programmes with the aim of giving back to society. During the year under review, the bank allocated a total of GH¢35,550 toward its CSR projects.
The Chief Executive Officer of the bank, Mr. Abraham Coffie – in an interview with Business & Financial Times, said the bank will continue to play a signiﬁcant role in government’s ﬁnancial inclusion agenda – and is poised to even to do more, as it has begun to leverage the available technology to serve their customers better as well as improving efﬁciency, especially with its growth strategy and service delivery.
According to him, the bank will continue to see its strength in the area of managing the credit needs of small and medium enterprises as well as continuing to improve upon the support it offers to this sector of the economy.
In an address, Mr. Kofi Owusu – the ARB Apex Bank, Kumasi Branch Operations Officer – on behalf of the Ag. Managing Director Mr Alex Kwasi Awuah, commended the shareholders, directors and management of Odotobri Rural Bank for the gains made in the 2020 financial year.
He applauded the bank and urged them to concentrate their efforts on the medium to small business segment, because that is where their strength lies.
He further encouraged Odotobri Rural Bank and all other member-banks to strive to perfect small business financing, because that niche-segment holds a huge potential for the rural banking sub-sector.
Performance Indicators for 2020 as against 2019
|Loans & Advances||39,699,398.00||41,981,969.00||-5.44%|
|Paid Up Capital||2,976,911.00||2,948,153.00||0.98 %
|Profit before taxation||-2,098,806.00||528,216.00||-397.34%