Bahrain’s GFH Financial Group reports net profit of $84.22m in 2021
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Bahrain’s GFH Financial Group reports net profit of $84.22m in 2021

Bahrain’s GFH Financial Group reports net profit of $84.22m in 2021

The group’s net profit increased by 86.77 per cent over 2020, supported by diversification and an international investment portfolio

The GFH Financial Group announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and 12 months ended 31 December 2021. Net profit attributable to shareholders was $23.88m for the fourth quarter of the year, up 8.92 per cent compared with $21.93m in the fourth quarter of 2020.

The increase was the result of a robust and consistent performance across the group’s core business lines and contributions from its investment banking business, which generated $52.25m in fees from placement activities linked to the group’s investments in the logistics, healthcare and education sectors.

Earnings per share for the quarter was US cents 0.72 versus US cents 0.64 for the comparative quarter of 2020. Total income for the fourth quarter was $128.14m compared with US$109.29m in the fourth quarter of 2020, a rise of 17.25 per cent. Consolidated net profit for the fourth quarter was $24.34m compared with $19.04m in the fourth quarter of 2020, an increase of 27.87 per cent. Total expenses, including impairment allowances, for the quarter amounted to $103.80m compared with $90.26m in the same period in 2020, up 15 per cent.

The group reported net profit attributable to shareholders of $84.22m for the full year compared with $45.09m in 2020, an increase of 86.77 per cent. The increase reflects stronger contributions throughout 2021 from all business lines, including investment banking, commercial banking, real estate and treasury activities.

Earnings per share for the year was US cents 2.50 compared to US cents 1.33 for the full year in 2020, an increase of 87.97 per cent. Total income for the year was $398.75m, up 23.30 per cent from $323.39m for the previous year. Consolidated net profit for the year was $92.62m compared to $49.34m in 2020, an increase of 87.70 per cent. Total expenses, including impairment allowances, for the year amounted to $306.13m, up from $274.05m in 2020, an increase of 11.71 per cent.

Total equity attributable to shareholders was $0.96bn at December 31 2021, up 5.45 per cent from $0.91bn at the end of 2020. Total assets of the group continued to grow, reaching US$8.08bn at December 31 2021 compared with $6.59bn at year-end 2020, an increase of 22.72 per cent. The group’s total assets and assets under management (AUM) also increased 25 per cent from $12bn at year-end 2020 to around $15bn at the end of 2021, reflecting continued growth in the group’s existing portfolio and new investments made during the year.

In line with the results, the board of directors recommended a total cash dividend of $60m at 6.07 per cent on par value, divided into 4.57 per cent cash dividends, amounting to $45m and 1.5 per cent stock dividends of $15m for the shareholders, subject to approval by regulators and other bodies.

Jassim Alseddiqi, chairman of GFH, said, “Despite the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic around the world, we were able to improve income, strengthen profitability and once again deliver a healthy dividend for our shareholders. Our results also continue to reflect the strength of our strategy and the quality of the portfolio of assets we have built and expanded over the past year across the region, the US, the UK and Europe. During the year, we also took important steps to enhance our balance sheet quality. In doing so, we completed the restructuring of our commercial banking business and set the grounds to spin off our real estate and infrastructure assets to a new company, Infracorp, which was announced in January and will specialise in investing in and managing sustainable infrastructure and real estate assets.”

Hisham Alrayes, Group CEO of GFH, added, “In total, during the year, we closed more than $1bn of new investments across the region, international logistics, healthcare and education sectors, which were met with strong demand from our investors and successfully placed. To support further growth, we also strengthened our presence in the UK with the appointment of a new CEO, as we expand our global investment activities as well as concluding a strategic partnership with Schroders Capital, the private markets investment division of Schroders, which will greatly bolster our international investment reach and enhance our access to a broader pool of attractive new opportunities across the defensive sectors on which we are focused. With solid foundations in place, we look forward to stronger performance and results in 2022.”

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