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Net Income of Al Baraka Banking Group Jumped by 15% to US$66 Million in the First Quarter of 2013 and Total Assets reached US$ 19.5 Billion

12 May 2013:
The Bahrain based leading Islamic banking group, Al Baraka Banking Group B.S.C (ABG) announced that its net income increased by 15% and total operating income by 16% in the first quarter of 2013 compared to the same period of 2012. Similarly, statement of financial positions witnessed moderate increases. Total assets increased by 2%, total deposits including equity of investment accountholders by 2% while total financing and investments remained unchanged at the end of March 2013 as compared with the end of December 2012. The Group results in the first quarter of 2013 confirms once again the successful business strategies carried out by the Group and its units subsidiaries, based on the diversification of products and services offered to different customer segments, with emphasis on quality and competitiveness, as well as the geographical expansion of the branch network, and improve the human and operational environment.

The financial statements of the Group for the first quarter of 2013 showed that the continued improvement of business environment reflected positively on income, with total operating income of US$ 233 million in the first quarter of 2013, an increase of 16% over same period in 2012. After deducting all operating expenses, net operating income amounted US$ 116 million in first quarter of 2013, which represents an increase of 18% compared to the net operating income during the first quarter of 2012. The net income amounted to US$ 66 in first quarter of 2013 compared to US$ 57 million in first quarter of 2012, which reflects an increase of 15%. This increase was achieved despite the increases in the operating expenses of the Group on account of further expansion in the branch network and enhancements in IT infrastructure and human resources. The net income attributable to parent’s shareholders reached US$ 37 million, which represent an increase of 13% comparing to the same period last year.

The total assets of the Group amounted to US$ 19.5 billion as at the end of March 2013, an increase of 2% over the comparative figure as at the end of 2012. Financing and investments portfolio amounted to US$ 14.3 billion as at the end of March 2013, maintaining its same level as the end of December 2012. Customer deposit and other accounts and equity of investment accountholders have witnessed an increase of 2% from US$ 16.4 billion at the end of December 2012 to US$ 16.7 billion at the end of March 2013, which indicates continued customer confidence and loyalty to the Group.

As for the results of the first quarter of 2013 compared to fourth quarter of 2012, the financial statement showed that the net income of the Group amounted to US$ 66 million in the first quarter of 2013 compared to US$ 52 million for the fourth quarter of 2012, an increase of 26%. Net operating income increased to US$ 116 million compared to US$ 112 million for the fouth quarter of 2012, representing an increase of 4%.

Commenting on these results, Sheikh Saleh Abdullah Kamel, Chairman of Al Baraka Banking Group, said “The political and economic implications continued in a number of Arab countries during the first quarter of 2013, while the efforts to treat the sovereign debt crisis in Euro zone continued internationally. These created cautious business environment for banks in the world, including the Arab banks, although they well distanced themselves from the toxic assets globally. Therefore, we are proud with the good results achieved by ABG during the first quarter of 2013, which reflects the Group’s commitment to the true Islamic banking model and prudential business strategies, which enabled it to deal wisely with these conditions and to continue expanding in the business.”

For his part, Mr. Abdulla Ammar Al Saudi, Vice Chairman of ABG, said that “The global financial and banking environment are still imposing on banks in the world to follow conservative and cautious business strategies. Therefore, we consider the financial results achieved by the Group in first quarter of 2013 as excellent by all standards and they reflect the success of the business strategies that we at the Board of Directors of the Group have put in place based on our points of strength, the opportunities generated in the markets in which we operate and our strong commitment to adhering to the highest professional values, principles and standards that we embodied in all the programs, services and products that the Group offers”.

Mr. Adnan Ahmed Yousif, Member of the Board of Directors and President & Chief Executive of Al Baraka Banking Group, said “the excellent results that we achieved in first quarter of 2013 were the outcome of the efforts which we are keen  to strengthen and enhance, including continually improving the quality of our products and services, introducing more innovative products, expanding the branch network of  ABG subsidiary units, strengthening relationships with our partners, investors and customers, and entering new markets as well as modernizing and developing our human, operational, regulatory and technical infrastructures both at Group level and subsidiary banking units levels. All these initiatives have contributed to maximizing the returns to the shareholders and investors of the Group thanks to the wide range of expertise we posses in the markets in which our units operate”.

With regard to the Group’s plans to expand its branch network, the President & Chief Executive said that “the subsidiary units of the Group in Turkey, Egypt, Jordan and Algeria continued opening new branches, with total branches reaching 425 branches at present, and we expect to add 65 new branches this year. It should also be noted here that the policy of expansion of the branches over the previous years has been one of our main focuses, through which we have succeeded in expanding our business, creating a permanent income growth, where the total number of branches of the group increased from 216 branches in 2006 to its current level, which means that they have doubled during almost six years.

With regard to geographic expansion and entry into new markets, Mr. Adnan Ahmed Yousif, said that the first quarter of 2013 saw a further activating of our representative office in Libya through expanding relationships with customers and offering various banking services to clients from individuals, companies and government agencies. At the same time we are studying to entre in the Moroccan market after the regulatory authorities there allowed the work of Islamic financial institutions. ”

Al Baraka Bank Turkey has issued 10-year Islamic subordinated Sukuk with total amount of US$ 200mm. The Bank aims are to take advantage of competitive pricing, diversify funding sources, in addition to improving capital adequacy ratio, as it will be considered a part of the equity base.

In terms of the development of the operating environment of the Group and its banking units, Al Baraka Bank Pakistan has recently celebrated the opening of its headquarters in the heart of the Pakistani capital, Karachi, reflecting the Group’s confidence in the country’s recovery from the current crisis, and to generate huge business opportunities for Islamic banks. We also look forward to the second quarter of this year to celebrate the opening of the headquarters of Al Baraka Egypt as well, which is a key market for the Group’s business. In addition, we hope that we will celebrate this year the opening of the headquarters of the Al Baraka Banking Group in Bahrain Bay, which is constructed based on the latest architectural style in one of the largest urban projects in the heart of the capital. The ABG’s new headquarter will enhance the status of Al Baraka Banking Group, regionally and globally and is consistent with our goals and aspirations for the future.

We also continued during the first quarter of 2013 modernizing the institutional, human and technical infrastructure of the Group through developing the regulations, applications and practices of corporate governance, risk management social responsibility, governance, compliance, AML, training, risk management regulations and FATCA compliance regulations in according with latest international standards.

The President & Chief Executive of the Group added that “In accordance with our new strategy, we have many plans and initiatives that we intend to implement during 2013.  These will include launching new innovative products and services in the markets as well as enhancing the standing of ABG in the international markets.  All of these plans will be implemented, God willing, successfully considering that we are the only Islamic banking group that has such diversity of geographical presence and excellent knowledge of the markets”.

The President & Chief Executive of ABG concluded his statement by praising the tireless efforts of the executive management at Group Head Office, the executive management teams of the banking units of Al Baraka Banking Group and related parties that played an instrumental role in achieving these excellent results for the Group

On this occasion, Sheikh Saleh Abdulla Kamel, Chairman of Al Baraka Banking Group, Mr. Abdulla Ammar Al Saudi, Vice Chairman, Mr. Abdulla Saleh Kamel, Vice Chairman, and Mr. Adnan Ahmed Yousif, ABG President & Chief Executive and all Members of the Board of Directors of ABG expressed their sincere thanks to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, Central Bank of Bahrain, Bahrain Bourse and Nasdaq Dubai for the cooperation and assistance they extended to the Group since it was established.  They also extended their thanks to all the Central Banks in the countries in which Group banks operate and to all investors and customers for their continued support.  They also thanked all the employees of the Group for their loyalty, hard work and dedication which stand behind the successes and achievements of the Group.

It is worth mentioning that Al Baraka Banking Group is a Bahrain Joint Stock Company Licensed as an Islamic Wholesale Bank by Central Bank of Bahrain, listed on Bahrain Bourse and Nasdaq Dubai stock exchanges. It is a leading international Islamic bank providing its unique services to around one billion people and with Standard and Poors investment grade long term counterparty credit rating of BBB- / A-3 (Short Term). Al Baraka offers retail, corporate, treasury and investment banking services, strictly in accordance with the principles of the Islamic Shari’a. The authorized capital of Al Baraka is US$1.5 billion, while total equity amounts to about US$ 1.9 billion.

The Group has a wide geographical presence in the form of subsidiary banking Units and representative offices in fifteen countries, which in turn provide their services through more than 425 branches. Al Baraka is currently having a strong presence    in  Jordan, Tunisia, Sudan, Turkey, Bahrain, Egypt, Algeria, Pakistan, South Africa, Lebanon, Syria, Indonesia, Libya, Iraq and Saudi Arabia.

Performance Indicators during the First Quarter of 2013

Statement of Income items (Q1-2013 compared to Q1-2012)
Growth Rate
Total operating income
16%
Net operating income
18%
Net income
15%
Statement of Financial Position items (31 Mar 2013 compared to 31 Dec 2012)
Total assets
2%
Total customer deposits
2%
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