The Trinidad Guardian / ANSA Merchant Bank Limited’s profit before tax of $314 million for the period ended December 31, 2017, was close to being flat, but they still fared better than others in the industry, Larry Howai, financial services advisor of the ANSA McAL Group told shareholders yesterday.
“It was three per cent down, which when you compare to what is happening in the rest of the industry is a reasonably good performance. The sector has doubled shareholders’ equity over the last ten years from $1 billion to over $2 billion. Our earnings per share is $2.71,” he said in his overview of companies’ in the financial services sector of the group.
“Our core banking operations increased by seven per cent, year over year. Our total banking, which includes dividends from subsidiaries…that increased by six per cent. Our life insurance profit increased by 27 per cent, general insurance did not perform as well, mainly because we had more claims this year,” he said
Howai said ANSA Merchant Bank was the largest revenue earner for the group, accounting for about 62 per cent of all revenue, while 38 per cent came from the insurance segment, the general company contributed 20 per cent and the other 18 per cent came from the other life insurance company.
Also offering highlights of the bank’s performance at the annual general meeting at the Tatil Building in Port-of-Spain was managing director Gregory Hill, who said the bank had $60 billion in assets and over the last ten years had done $24 billion in financing in the local and regional markets. He described their 85,000 vehicle financing loans as significant.
Noting that asset finance is the cornerstone of ANSA Merchant Bank’s performance, Hill added: “As you see the bank is quite diversified. We have several other business lines and each of them pulling them their weight at about 17 per cent each. So when there are difficult economic times we are able to weather the storm.”
In response to questions from shareholders, ANSA McAL chairman Norman Sabga said there are no immediate plans to get into retail banking market.
“It would certainly be an attractive area of growth. It is something we have discussed on numerous occasions but retail banking licenses are not lying around,” he said.
“When one looks at our size in terms of the market, there are huge areas of growth. We have gone into wealth management, our asset finance business where we have eight or nine per cent of the market, other areas like investment banking. We are growing.”