ZB Financial Holdings today reported a 22 percent increase in after-tax profit, to $11.4 million in the full year to December from $9.4 million last year, largely driven by fee income. Revenue for the period under review amounted to $65,07 million representing a 12 percent increase from same period in 2015.
Presenting company results today, chief executive Ron Mutangadayi said operating expenses increased by 7 percent to $49.5 million from $46.3 million last year, though net interest and related income had remained flat at $16 million.
In the period under review, ZBFH’s total assets increased by 5 percent to $493 million on a 15 percent increase in Treasury Bills held. Loans and advances remained almost flat at $99 million on a guarded approach to credit expansion.
Mutangadayi said the institution was looking to access cheaper lines of credit on the international market following its removal from the United States sanctions list last September.
“Having just come out of sanctions, we first had to get our correspondent accounts re-established. Now that our Euro, US and Rand accounts are operational we can now go out and court investors for new lines of credit we are speaking to regional investors at the moment for a $20 million line of credit which we expect to conclude in the not too distant future.”
ZB Financial Holding’s banking division has been overwhelmed in recent months with long bank queues of account holders seeking to withdraw cash, which the bank has been struggling to supply due to low cash in their coffers.
“The governor has always said that it does not make sense for you to use foreign currency to import cash when you need to fund your nostro account. Which is why bond notes were introduced so that you have a transacting currency on the domestic market and foreign currency is used for things that foreign currency should be used for,” he said.