Bergen, 14 February 2018: The Sbanken group recorded a net profit of NOK 174.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2017, compared with NOK 149.7 million in the fourth quarter the year before. The increase in profit was primarily a result of strong growth in customer lending and low loan losses.
At quarter-end, total customer lending amounted to NOK 72.1 billion, compared with NOK 63.5 billion at the end of the fourth quarter of 2016. This corresponds to a year-on-year growth of 13.7 per cent. Return on equity was 13.3 per cent, compared with 12.7 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2016. Growth in funds under management was record strong at 20.0 per cent in the quarter.
Proposed dividend of NOK 0.75 per share.
Change of name to Sbanken
Continued strong growth in FuM, 48 per cent last 12 months
Proposed dividend of NOK 0.75 per share
"We have successfully changed our name and at the same time been able to deliver strong results in the quarter. Despite increased cost related to the change of name, we delivered solid returns with a return on equity of 13.3 per cent. We experienced strong growth in FuM, supported by a record strong growth in net client cash flow, which proves our strong position in savings. Sbanken has already succeeded in developing a strong brand recognition after the change of name on 6 November 2017. We will continue to deliver user friendly services, fair and transparent prices and award winning customer service to our customers." says Magnar Øyhovden, CEO of Sbanken ASA.
Net interest income increased to NOK 345.2 (309.3) million as a result of increased net lending to customers, partly offset by a slightly lower net interest margin. Net commission and fee income decreased to NOK 38.6 (42.1) million in the fourth quarter. Adjusting for one off cost of NOK 8.3 million related to change of debit-and credit cards in relation to the rebranding, the net commission and fee income increased by 11.4 per cent from the fourth quarter of 2016.
Operating expenses amounted to NOK 173.4 (140.7) million in the quarter. Adjusted for one-off costs of NOK 20.2 million related to the rebranding process, operating expenses amounted to NOK 153.2 million. Adjusted for one-off costs, the cost-to-income ratio in the quarter was 38.5 per cent.
Due to forward flow agreements, for the sale of non-performing loans, entered into in the fourth quarter of 2017, the loan loss estimates have been revised. This resulted in a reversal of previous recorded losses of NOK 25.4 million. Net write-downs on loans was positive in the amount of NOK 13.0 (-11.4) million in the quarter. The net cost of losses was positive in the amount of NOK 10.9 (-13.6) million. The loan-loss ratio was -0.06 (0.09). The net cost of losses was positively affected by NOK 8.6 million from the sale of a portfolio of non-performing unsecured credit in the quarter.
At the end of the quarter, the bank had a core Tier 1 capital ratio of 14.7 per cent, a Tier 1 capital ratio of 16.2 per cent and a total capital ratio amounting to 18.1 per cent. At quarter-end Sbanken had a leverage ratio of 6.1 per cent, unchanged from the third quarter of 2017. The capital ratios include 87.4 per cent of retained earnings from the full year of 2017.
A detailed financial report for the group and for Sbanken ASA is attached to this notice. The report for the wholly owned subsidiary, Sbanken Boligkreditt AS, is distributed separately.
Contact details, Investor Relations
Brede Selseng, Head of IR Sbanken ASA, +47 971 62 171
Henning Nordgulen, CFO, Sbanken ASA, +47 952 65 990
Leif-Kjartan Bjørsvik, Head of communications, Sbanken ASA, +47 900 41 162
About Sbanken ASA
In April 2000, Sbanken was launched as the first purely digital bank in Norway. Today, the bank offers a comprehensive range of financial products and services to individuals and households in Norway within payments and card services, deposit-based savings, investment products, long-term loans and short- term loans. The bank has no branches and all products and services are offered directly through the digital platform, which is available on a broad range of user devices. As of 31 December 2017, Sbanken had 430 000 active customers and total assets of NOK 83.5 billion. For more information, see sbanken.no/investor-relations.
This information is subject to the disclosure requirements pursuant to section 5-12 of the Norwegian Securities Trading Act.