… Barclays insists despite declining profits
Barclays Bank of Botswana has posted poor financial results again. The bank’s financial performance has been on a free-fall for the third year running now.
The latest results, which were released this week representing a six month period ending 30 June 2014, paints a gloomy picture for the once profitable bank which has been overtaken by its competitors in the commercial banking sector. While the profit after tax went down by a huge 35 percent, operating costs also went up by 10 percent to reach P347 million.
In the bank’s 2013 Annual Report, Managing Director Reinette van der Merwe stated that they spend the better part of that period on creating the blocks that will transform the business and edge the bank closer to its goal of becoming the ‘Go-To’ bank.
This week van der Merwe disclosed on the latest results that the bank is yet to find its feet again. “Our half year performance is a reflection of the current low interest rate environment which has impacted our interest income business at a time of continued investment activity being undertaken to transform the business and edge us closer to our goal of being the Go-To bank,” said the bank MD.
It is evident that the goal of transforming the business has not come at a cheaper price as the operating costs swelled by 10 percent resulting in the total income to decrease by 6 percent to arrive at P608 million.
Despite its current state of affairs, directors remain optimistic that the strategy will finally deliver positive results in the long run.
“We remain focused on delivering on our strategic objectives, growing our corporate customer base remains key,” said the executives. For the period under review, Barclays says it achieved a 17 percent growth in loans and advances to customers, 70 percent of which was in corporate banking.