ZB Financial Holdings – Audited Financial Results for the year ended 31 December 2023

By Published On: May 29th, 2024Categories: Corporate announcement, Earnings
Zb Financial Holdings Limited 2023 Abridged Results

ZB Financial Holdings Limited (ZBFH.zw) 2023 Abridged Report

ACTING CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT

Operating Environment:

The operating environment was characterized by exchange rate volatility, with the first half of the year experiencing rapid depreciation of the local currency and upward inflationary pressures which caused some sharp price increases, ultimately resulting in increased business operating costs for the Group. However, in the second half of the year, economic variables such as inflation and the exchange rate improved resulting in relative stability in the operating environment. This was mainly attributable to the tightening of monetary policy by The Central Bank, which curtailed speculative behaviour in the market. On the other hand, the downside of tight monetary stance was the deceleration of credit creation as a result of liquidity challenges. This negatively affected funded income performance for the Group and reversing some of the foreign exchange gains recorded in the first half of the year.

The economy also witnessed an increase in usage of USD across all sectors of the economy. This increased the demand for USD resulting in increased USD revenues for the Group.

Group Performance:

The Group’s operations continued to be profitable, posting an inflation adjusted profit after tax (PAT) of ZW$665.383bn, a 312% improvement from ZW$161.465bn in 2022. The Group’s profit performance is discussed in greater detail by the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) in his report.

Capital Requirements:

As at 31 December 2023, all Group companies, with the exception of ZB Building Society, were in compliance with prescribed minimum capital requirements. The Group is still working to consolidate all its banking operations under one license, that is, merging ZB Bank Limited, ZB Building Society and Intermarket Banking Corporation.

Dividends:

The Board has declared a final dividend of ZW1 472 .22 cents and US0.56 cents per share for the year ended 31 December 2023. This brings the aggregate dividend for the year ended 31 December 2023 to ZW1960.69 cents and US0.65 cents. The ZWL portion of the dividend will be settled in ZiG at the rate ruling at 5 April 2024; which is the date of introduction of the new currency. A separate dividend notice will be published to this effect.

Sustainability and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Reporting

The Group’s strategic drive is on sustainability underpinned by integrating environmental, social and governance into economic decisions, operations, strategy, products and services, and practices. The Group will leverage of being one of 14 financial institutions in Zimbabwe seeking sustainability certification through the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ)-led Sustainability Standards Certification Initiative (SSCI) which is awarded by European Organisation for Sustainable Development (EOSD). While the Group could not attain certification by 31 December 2023 as planned, we are targeting certification in FY2024 given that substantial work that has already been done. Our desire is to ensure sustainability is a defining factor in how we deliver financial services to our stakeholders while redefining the future of sustainable financial services in Zimbabwe and beyond. Lastly, the Group continues to strengthen the building blocks underpinning the efforts in implementing sustainability across the business.

In addition, to the Group’s sustainability drive, the Group has made progress towards adopting Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Reporting.

Directorate:

Mrs Pamela Chiromo, the then chairman of the board resigned on 1 July 2023. On behalf of the Board and management, I extend my gratitude for her contributions and leadership during her term of office. I wish her success in her future endeavours.

Mr Jacob Mutevedzi retired from the Board on 1 July 2023. I would also like to extend my gratitude and appreciation to him for his distinguished service to the Group. I wish him success in his future endeavours.

Mr Luxon Zembe resigned from the Board on the 12th of April 2024. I would like to extend my gratitude and appreciation to him for his distinguished service to the Group as both director and Chairman of the board.

Outlook:

Although the economic environment is likely to remain challenging in 2024 as characterized by high levels of inflation, exchange rate volatility and climatic changes particularly, effects of EI-Nino, the Group is confident that set strategies will assist it to navigate these erratic economic conditions through the implementation of effective front-end systems, brand equity promotion and continuation with its mantra of creating happy people.

Furthermore, the Group endeavours to deliver growth and value for its shareholders through implementation of sustainable revenue generation and cost management strategies.

Conclusion:

I extend my continued appreciation to our valued customers and other key stakeholders, without whom the Group would not have been able to sustain its operations. Furthermore, I remain grateful to Board colleagues, Management and Staff, whose collective contributions enabled the Group to attain this performance for the financial year ended 31 December 2023. The operating environment has continued to pose its challenges, but through the combined interventions and inputs from all of us, the Group continues to hold its own.

A. Makamure
Acting Chairman

27 May 2024

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