MBSL Income Grows, Challenges Weigh Down Profits

(Created date: 04-Jun-2014)

Income growth of the Merchant Bank of Sri Lanka (MBSL) rose 26% in the year ending 31 December 2013 from Rs.1.87 billion to Rs.2.36 billion, as profits dipped amidst a challenging environment, the bank said in a statement.

The significant growth during the year was attributed to an aggressive expansion drive initiated by MBSL over 2012/2013 and the dedication of its staff towards achieving predetermined goals said M. R. Shah, Chairman of MBSL.

The expansion plan yielded highly positive results with 16 new customer touch points becoming profitable immediately.

Our objective was to reach a larger segment of society and widen our presence across the country. Although 30 branches & customer touch points may seem small in number, this initiative has successfully enhanced MBSL brand recognition and raised brand awareness across the country. In 2013, these 16 customer touch points generated an income of Rs. 334 million, which is 15% of the total income of the Company and made a net contribution of Rs. 12 million, giving plenty of hopes for a brighter future. Such a contribution by newly established customer touch points is a remarkable feat" he said in his communique in their annual report.

The overall company profits decreased from Rs.201 million to Rs.117 million in the face of challenging times for the leasing industry. The policy rate reduction was encouraging to a company like MBSL that does not have access to customer deposits. However, the growth opportunity presented by the lower interest rates was largely negated, due to the persistent downturn of the leasing market.

Earnings per Share (EPS) dropped from Rs.1.49 to Rs.0.87.

The asset growth 12% of the MBSL from Rs.11.89 billion to Rs.13.27 billion was encouraging as was the 7% growth in the loan portfolio from Rs.9.3 billion to Rs.9.91 billion.

Meanwhile, the income of the group increased from Rs.3.96 billion to Rs.4.28 billion and the net operating income of the group slightly dropped from Rs.1.76 billion to Rs.1.53 billion. Stock market trading was not very positive for the year due to the continuing downturn of the market. MBSL also incurred a substantial loss from its associate stock broking company Lanka Securities (Pvt.) Ltd. in addition to its own trading losses. In line with this national financial sector consolidation plan, MBSL has commenced a process to merge MCSL Financial Services Ltd and MBSL Savings Bank Ltd. with MBSL said T. Mutugala, CEO of MBSL.

Having taken over Ceylinco Savings Bank Ltd. which is now called MBSL Savings Bank Ltd. MBSL could not affect a total recovery of the said bank due to their inability to capitalize adequately and unforeseen eventualities experienced in the midst of downturn of its stability.

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