The Bawjiase Area Rural Bank PLC, headquartered at Awutu Bawjiase in the Awutu Senya West district of the Central Region, has made some remarkable financial gains in the 2022 fiscal year – reporting a robust Profit before Tax (PBT) of GH₵3.6million as against GH₵2.3million recorded in 2021.
Despite the country’s turbulent monetary and fiscal macroeconomic environment, which saw it returning to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a bailout, the bank maintained impressive growth in almost all performance indicators.
The bank’s total operating income increased by 33.45 percent, from more than GH₵11.5million in the previous year to over GH₵15million for the 2022 year under review. While also posting an increase in its stated capital relating to ‘Ordinary Shares’ issued at a value of GH₵49,198.
The bank’s total assets stood at GH₵80.7million during the year under review as against GH₵66.8million recorded in the previous year. This represents an increase of 20.81 percent.
The Bawjiase Rural Bank PLC also increased its loans and advances to customers by 10.1 percent during the year under review, while also experiencing a 20.7 percent growth in deposits from customers.
Also, the bank’s total equity and reserves for the year under review was GH₵19.3million, being a 25.35 percent increase from GH₵15.4million recorded in the 2021 financial year. This implies the bank is robust and resilient, and can therefore absorb any emerging shocks.
The positive momentum of this thriving financial institution is backed by its commitment to shareholders and operating communities, as it invested some GH₵30,000 in various community development initiatives as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities. These include 2022 Farmer’s Day celebrations at the local level; and support in the area of health and education among others
Chairman-Board of Directors, Mr. Kwaku Bonsu, while acknowledging the financial sector’s difficult year, noted that the bank’s performance exemplified its strategic acumen by consistently optimising its core operations – resulting in these impressive gains.
“This achievement underscores the bank’s astute management of its assets and liabilities, fortifying its financial stability and competitive position within the financial sector,” he said.
Mr. Bonsu was speaking to shareholders during the 32nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at Awutu Bawjiase, and observed that the resounding success has been propelled by a multifaceted approach including prudent risk management, innovative product offerings and an expanding customer base.
Moreover, it signifies the bank’s adept navigation of economic fluctuations and market intricacies – reflecting its resilience and adaptability, he added.
Given the gains made by Bawjiase Area Rural Bank PLC, the Board of Directors, according to Mr. Bonsu, proposed payments of GH₵501,335 and GH₵601,602 as bonus and cash dividends respectively.
However, he stated that the dividends are subject to Bank of Ghana (BoG) approval.
He assured shareholders of the bank that the Board of Directors is committed to ensuring good corporate governance as a means of determining the bank’s direction and performance.
“To this end, the bank aims to comply with best practices in corporate governance directives issued by the regulator,” he added.
Also speaking at the 32nd AGM of Bawjiase Rural Bank, Managing Director of ARB Apex Bank PLC, Mr. Alex Kwasi Awuah, noted that: “Despite challenges faced by the bank, it managed to report very modest gains during the financial year”.
Notably, he said, there was an increase in financial assets, profitability among others as well as the continued corporate social investments – adding that beneficiaries of these efforts will become development ambassadors for the bank. “This is because they can relate their unique experience to others.”
The ARB Apex boss observed that Bawjiase and Kasoa remain hotbeds for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) with the potential for growth. He therefore urged the bank to work on ensuring it expands business coverage to the untapped and unserved segments of communities.
He also announced that the T24 core banking solution in which rural and community banks (RCBs) operate has been significantly improved to create a more congenial environment for RCBs.
“We pledge to continue working on other solutions that bring data convenience to the RCBs, especially deployment of the Internet, mobile and agency banking solutions which have become key enablers and an integral part of banking services in the country,” he stated.