Sohar International continues to outperform with a funnelled vision to be a world-leading Omani service company that helps customers, communities and people for prosper and grow. The bank announced its net profit for the nine months ended 30 September 2019 of RO 25.059 million compared to RO 21.940 million during the same period in 2018, reflecting a progressive growth of 14.22%.
Commenting on the financial results, Mr. Mohammed Mahfoudh Al Ardhi, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Sohar International, stated, “Buoyed by government’s economic diversification initiatives, Oman’s banking sector is geared towards robust business growth and profitability. Despite the challenging economic and financial situation driven by volatile oil prices, the government’s continued focus on key diversification sectors such as ports and logistics, manufacturing and tourism creates ample opportunities for the banking and finance sector in the country to contribute to the sustainable development of the national economy. Cashing on these positive sentiments, Sohar International is well-positioned to further build on its market excellence, capitalise on upcoming opportunities, play a positive role in enhancing the national economy, and continue to create sustainable value for its stakeholders.”
The Bank’s total operating income increased by 6.27% from OMR 69.650 million in the first nine months of 2018 to OMR 74.018 million for the same period in 2019. Operating profit increased by 1.32% from OMR 39.821 million in the first nine months of 2018 to OMR 40.347 million for the same period in 2019. During the first nine months of 2019, operating expenses increased by 12.88% to OMR 33.671 million compared to OMR 29.829 million in the first nine months of 2018, reflecting our continued investment in people and core infrastructure. The Bank continues to focus on delivering sustainable growth in line with its strategic objectives.
The Bank’s gross loans and advances increased by 12.48% from OMR 2.297 billion as at 30 September 2018 to OMR 2.584 billion as at 30 September 2019. Total assets grew by 12.47% from OMR 2.968 billion as at 30 September 2018 to OMR 3.338 billion as at 30 September 2019. Customer deposits increased by 16.19% to OMR 1.994 billion as at 30 September 2019 compared to OMR 1.717 billion as at 30 September 2018.
Commenting on the results, Chief Executive Officer of Sohar International - Mr. Ahmed Al Musalmi remarked, “With our 5-year strategy in place and in full execution, Sohar International experienced another strong quarter from all segments of business; and I am particularly proud of our ability to complete the rights issue resulting in an increased shareholder’s equity of OMR 40 million. This has been part of our strategic plan, and it enables us to continue to expand whilst maintain strong investor confidence and a leading market position.”
Mr. Al Musalmi further added: “Consistent with our performance, Sohar International’s active role in promoting and contributing proactively on Oman’s socioeconomic development agenda. Our focus for the last quarter remains geared towards helping customers win and achieve their goals, promising them unparalleled responsive banking services for their ever-changing needs.”
In the bank’s journey towards achieving excellence and the purpose of winning, Sohar International was honoured and acknowledged with various awards and accolades for their business leadership, growth, and CSR initiatives which are a testament to the bank’s strategy and outlook. The recent period also witnessed Sohar International sign an agreement with European Financial Group (EFG), one of the largest and best capitalised Swiss private banks to join efforts in order to provide exclusive access to global investment opportunities and innovative products. This agreement was amongst the several memorandums of understanding signed to fulfill the Bank’s promise of helping customers ‘win’ and is a statement demonstrating the bank’s investment banking and advisory capabilities.
As part of its ongoing commitment to the society at large, the bank continues to engage with the community through conducting regional events and online engagement initiatives. With an effort to further empower the Omani youth, the period also saw the bank open up its ‘Tomohi’ programme for the next batch of interns aligning its activities with the national agenda. The bank’s Islamic window also witnessed developments during the quarter as it continued to sponsor key activities such as the 2nd Salalah International Financial Islamic Conference.