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Fitch Affirms UBA’s Viability Rating as Agusto Upgrades Rating to “Aa” -as UBA stock now best performing on the exchange

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Fitch International, one of the foremost global rating agencies has affirmed United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc’s viability rating at “B”, as the pan-African banking group continue to sustain its benchmark asset quality and strong profitability amidst industry and macroeconomic challenges.

UBA is one of the few banks with strong risk management framework, which has helped keep non-performing loans ratio at a moderate level of 1.74% as at the end-March 2016, as against industry average of over 6%, as reported by Fitch in its recent report on Nigerian banks.

Fitch also upgraded UBA’s outlook to stable from Negative, thus reinforcing the strong outlook on the Bank, especially as its diversified network across eighteen other African countries make it relatively immune against the potential cyclical volatilities in any of its country of operations.

Also, the foremost local rating agency in Nigeria, Agusto & Co, at its rating review of UBA Plc, upgraded the Bank’s rating from “A+” to “Aa-“, with a stable outlook. According to Agusto & Co, “the rating of United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) is upheld by the Bank’s improved capitalization, good liquidity and large pool of stable deposits, strong domestic presence supported by the Bank’s extensive branch network and growing alternative banking channels.

“We note improvement in profitability and the Bank’s good asset quality. The Rating takes into cognizance the weak macroeconomic climate on the banking industry’s asset quality, which we do not expect UBA to be excluded. Nonetheless, we note positively its diversified geographical reach, which will cushion to an extent the impact of the weak Nigerian economic climate,” Agusto & Co stated in its credit rating report.

Just as the credit rating agencies are strong on the fundamentals of UBA Plc, equity analysts have also affirmed the asset quality, profitability and broad investment case of the Bank, particularly as UBA has maintained an average return on equity of over 20% in the past three years, bucking the challenging economic environment and dwarfing peer performance track.

Following the strong financial performance of UBA in the first quarter of 2016, improved transparency and disclosure, which is now seen as benchmark for Nigerian banks, analysts at Renaissance Capital and CSL Stockbrokers (a part of the FCMB Group) upgraded the rating on UBA stock to “Buy,” with target prices of N9.40 and N7.21 respectively.

Reflecting investors’ conviction in the strong fundamentals of the Bank and the appetite for the stock, the share price has gained 39% thus far in 2016 to rank as the best performing banking stock on the Nigerian Stock Exchange. Closing at N4.70 on Wednesday, 13 July, 2016, UBA still trades at significant discount to analysts’ consensus valuation of the shares, which is put at N8.50 for the 2016 calendar year.

The Bank paid N0.20 interim and N0.40 final dividend in 2015 financial year and should currently be auditing its 2016 half year results in line with the Group’s governance culture of auditing results twice in a year. UBA is audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the global big-4 audit firms, which subjects clients to a rigorous international best audit practice.

United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) is the third largest lender in Nigeria and a leading provider of financial services across 19 African countries, and with presence in New York, London and Paris. The Bank serves almost 11 million customers across expansive brick and mortal branches as well as diversified alternative electronic banking channels.

UBA has a diversified shareholder base of over 270,000, with some of the greatest global fund managers as well as multilateral institutions like the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and African Development Bank (AfDB) being shareholders of the Bank.

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My son’s death a test from God – Heartbroken Gov. Sule

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Heartbroken Governor Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State on Friday said the death of his son, Hassan, is a test from God.

Hassan, 36, died on Thursday after a brief illness.

He spoke while receiving condolences at the palace of his father, the Sarkin Gudi, Alhaji Sule Bawa, in Akwanga LGA.

Sule said he was the one consoling somebody who lost his nine children and 70 cows the previous day and that today God decided to test him, to see whether he was sincere in consoling that bereaved father.

“This is my time to be tested. I see this as a test from God. I was the person consoling somebody that lost his 9 children and 70 cows yesterday, and today God decided to test me, to see whether I was sincere in consoling that bereaved father,” he said in a report by The Punch.

According to him, his son grew up carrying all his siblings along, saying that it was only God that has the power to take him away.

Sule added that his son was the one taking decisions on their businesses, saying that he was always on hand to advice him on what next to do, as his schedule would not allow him to run any business.

The governor insisted that God took him away to test hi resilience and faith.

“God didn’t seek my advice when he gave Hassan to me and he will not seek my advice when he takes him away,” he said.

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Senate summons Kyari, CEO NNPCL over N48 billion pipeline surveillance contract awarded to Tompolo

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The Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions has summoned the Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), Mr. Mele Kyari, over a N48 billion pipeline surveillance contract awarded to stakeholders in the Niger Delta region.
The pipeline surveillance contract was awarded by the Federal Government to Global West Vessel Specialist Limited, a private maritime security firm founded by Government Ekpemupolo, an erstwhile Commander of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) also known as Tompolo.

The Tompolo-owned firm was expected to protect all the oil pipelines criss-crossing nearly all the states in the Niger Delta in collaboration with other major stakeholders in the oil bearing communities in the region.
Specifically, Tompolo is expected to carry out the N4 billion per month contract that covers Delta, Ondo, Imo, Rivers and some parts of Bayelsa State in collaboration with major tribes along the communities that host the oil pipelines.

However the Isoko Ethnic Nationality has petitioned the Senate alleging that their young men were not being carried along in the multi-billion naira project.

The Isoko people under the auspices of Interested Isoko Youth Groups, through a petition sent to the Senate on their behalf by Stanley Okonmah, said they were completely marginalised in the contract award.
The lsoko Ethnic Nationality requested the Senate to probe the award of the contract and prevail on the NNPCL’s management to award a fresh contract to a company owned by an Isoko person.

Specifically, the people urged the Senate to look into the matter and urged the Minister of Petroleum Resources and the Group Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) to correct the anomaly.

They want the NNPCL to award the pipeline surveillance contract to a company to be chosen by stakeholders of Isoko nation.

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, Senator Ayo Akinyelure (PDP – Ondo Central), at a session in Abuja, said the GCEO of the NNPCL was being summoned to the Senate for him to come and assure the Isoko people that the agency would do the needful to avoid economic sabotage by the aggrieved youths of the area.
He said, “The GCEO of the NNPCL is hereby summoned by the Senate Committee on Ethics Privileges and Public Petitions (to appear before this committee) on January 25.

“We want him to come and assure Nigerians that he would do the needful to calm down the youths so that they will not engage in pipeline vandalism.”

Earlier, the leadership of the Isoko youths told the panel that since oil was discovered in their land and pipelines installed there in 1958, till date, no case of vandalism had been recorded in the area.

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Confusion at Lagos Airport as Workers Embark On Strike…… Passengers Stranded!(Photos)

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Several passengers were stranded this morning at the Murtala Mohammed International airport as airport workers began strike starting from midnight.

passengers were spotted all around with airlines having little information on the way forward.

for instance, virgin Atlantic passengers that were due for London trip this morning were helpless as many had to reschedule their flights and many left loitering around

more details………

 

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