GFH reports strong performance in Q1, records US$16.12 million profit | THE DAILY TRIBUNE | KINGDOM OF BAHRAIN

GFH reports strong performance in Q1, records US$16.12 million profit

TDT | Manama

The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com

Helped by a strong performance of all its business lines, GFH Financial Group yesterday reported a profit which surged 217.2% in the first quarter, despite the continuing effect of the pandemic. First-quarter profit, GFH said, was also boosted by improved contributions from its commercial banking and treasury activities.

“In the first quarter, profitability was driven by the placement of unique and diverse deals including the Group’s c.US$135 million acquisition of a mission-critical distribution facility in Chicago, leased to Michelin North America, as well as the sale of GFH’s US-based portfolio of pre-IPO, high-growth companies that specialise in next-generation technologies,” Hisham Alrayes, CEO of GFH, said.

Also supporting the results was the sale of equity investments and treasury income realised from Sukuks, notes and fixed income.

Quarterly results

The first-quarter net profit attributable to shareholders was US$16.12 million up from US$5.08 m in the same quarter a year ago. Earnings per share were US cents 0.53 compared to US cents 0.15 in the prior-year quarter.

Consolidated net profit jumped 185.2% to US$19.34 m from US$6.78 m in the first quarter of 2020. Total equity attributable to shareholders was US$0.92 billion on 31 March 2021 from US$0.91 billion at year-end 2020, up 0.4%.

The marginal increase in shareholders’ equity was primarily due to profit for the period and fair value movement in the treasury portfolio. Total income was US$90.39 m compared to US$69.46 m for the first quarter of 2020, a 30.1% rise.

Supporting the growth was income generated from the placement of deals, sale of assets and increased treasury activities.

Total expenses were US$71.05 m, up 13.4% from US$62.68 m in the year-ago quarter. Commenting, Jassim Alseddiqi, Chairman of GFH, said, “We’re very pleased with the Group’s first-quarter results especially in light of the continuing effects of the pandemic still being felt around the world.

Despite this, the first three months of 2021 saw GFH make great strides across the business and deliver good growth in profits and income year-over-year.

Over the quarter, we continued to grow our retail and investment banking, asset management and treasury businesses as well as our portfolio and presence in key markets including the GCC, UK, Europe and the US.” Looking ahead, he said GFH will continue building on the momentum.

“We will focus and expect to further accelerate growth, enhance value and strengthen the bottom line in the periods ahead.” Alrayes added, “We entered 2021 with a very promising pipeline of opportunities and successfully converted these into transactions that were welcomed by our investors across the region.”