Total assets up by 5.1% year-on-year to KD 30.4bn as of end of September 2020
KUWAIT CITY, Oct 26: National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) posted a net profit of KD 168.7 million (USD 550.9 million) for the first nine months of 2020, compared to KD 302.2 million (USD 986.8 million) for the same period last year; dropping by 44.2% yearon- year.
As for the three months period ended 30 September 2020, the bank recorded a net profit of KD 57.6 million (USD 188.1 million) which included a one-off profit from the sale of the bank’s old headquarter. 3Q2020 profits grew at 72.3% when compared to 2Q2020 profits while recording a year-on-year drop of 38.1% compared to 3Q2019.
Commenting on the bank’s results for the first nine months 2020, Nasser Al-Sayer, The Chairman of the Board of Directors of National Bank of Kuwait, said: “The negative effects due to the outbreak of COVID19 remained the main highlight of the global economic scene despite some signs of recovery during the third quarter. An economic downturn in the GCC was much felt with lower oil prices pressuring fiscal positions.”
Al-Sayer pointed out that despite the challenging operating environment, and its clear impact on the profits of the banking sector, the bank’s financial results during the first nine months of the year demonstrated the bank’s flexible business model and solid position, while continuing to benefit from its diversification and digital transformation strategies. This underpins the bank’s ability to withstand the fallout of the crisis, and to continue growing its profits as we gradually move ahead to a recovery phase.
Al-Sayer added that, in light of these exceptional circumstances, and through its highly professional cadres, the bank continued providing support to its customers through financing, advisory and top-tier banking services; enabling them to overcome their challenges and meet their long-term obligations.
Al-Sayer affirmed that NBK remains committed towards all stakeholders under all circumstances. The bank’s mission is to provide top-tier banking services to its customers, maximize the benefit to its shareholders, and perform its social responsibilities. This was clearly demonstrated since the outset of the crisis as we have been regularly supporting the government’s and civil society’s efforts to contain the pandemic.
In addition, NBK is committed to implementing the principles of sound governance, which is a cornerstone of sustainable development for all of the bank’s business. Al-Sayer extended his thanks and appreciation to NBK employees for the exceptional efforts, sense of responsibility and teamwork spirit they showed during these exceptional circumstances. Their efforts continue to be a source of pride, and proves that NBK’s human capital is the key pillar for achieving the Group’s future goals and long-term vision.
Al-Sayer concluded: “On behalf of the bank’s board members and all employees, we mourn with great sadness and sorrow the demise of HH the late Amir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah. We are confident that his successor, HH Sheikh Nawaf Al Ahmad Al Sabah, the Amir of Kuwait, shall continue the legacy towards a prosperous future and stability for Kuwait.”
On his part, Isam Al-Sager, NBK Group CEO said: “NBK’s operations are not fenced from the repercussions of the pandemic on economic activity. However, our financial results demonstrate the success of our proactive strategy that we started years ago, aiming to diversify income sources and to increase our digital reach. Moreover, our financial performance during those critical times also reflect our prudential risk management and success in building a flexible business model that is capable of withstanding abnormal conditions and realizing the utmost benefits from future recovery.”
“Despite the consequences of the crisis we remained committed to our conservative approach. During the first nine months of the year, we continued building provisions in anticipation of the expected uncertainties and the difficult operating circumstances across many sectors. Our provision and impairment charges increased by 98.4% year-on-year for the nine months period.” Al-Sager indicated.
Al-Sager added that NBK enjoys a solid financial position thanks to its diversified and stable deposit base, strong capitalization, high asset quality and comfortable liquidity levels. Furthermore, the strong financial position was reflected in the growth of the bank’s balance sheet, as both, loan portfolio and customer deposits achieved remarkable growth during the first nine months of the year. Al-Sager also highlighted that the bank’s approach towards cost cutting is to strike a balance between key efficiency initiatives at the Group level to mitigate the impact on profitability, while continuing to invest to achieve our strategic expansion goals in key markets.
Moreover, the accelerated implementation of the bank’s Digital Transformation Roadmap contributed to the launch of many digital banking services and advanced payment solutions over the past months, which were well-received by all customer segments. Concluding his statements, Al-Sager stressed that NBK has always managed to overcome exceptional circumstances and is able to utilize its resources to be the largest beneficiary from opportunities created amid economic recovery.