The Bank, as is evidenced in this Annual Report, has delivered some astounding performances in the year in question. I am very pleased to report that City Bank achieved a record net profit of BDT 184.9 crore in 2010 which is 126% higher than previous year's. Few numbers that we can actually be proud of: Operating Revenue grew by 82%; Profit before tax by 116%; Cost of fund went down from 6.1% to 4.9%; and shareholder's equity increased by 96%. Also growth remained a major priority for us – the Funds Under Management (i.e. the sum total of bank's total deposits and total loans and advances) in this period increased by 20.6% - to BDT 12,775 crore from BDT 10,587 crore despite not-so-favorable macro economic conditions.
The Strategic Plan crafted combinedly by the Board of Directors and the management some 3.5 years ago – in the 3rd quarter of 2007 – under my guidance basically called for a strong focus on a number of key initiatives aimed at mainly (a) developing our retail, corporate, SME, treasury and cards businesses; (b) improving the overall quality of our assets; (c) enhancing the value of our brand; (d) leveraging the technological potential. By the end of the 3-year Strategic Plan period, the Bank is well positioned as a highly respectable financial institution brand in the country, ready to take full advantage of new business opportunities.
As the Chairman of the Bank, this is where I take the most happiness and pride in. By the end of the Strategic Plan period, today's City Bank is both an inwardly and outwardly changed, a virtually new City Bank – fully transformed from an old and traditional local bank into a performance-driven, modern institution that is not only respected locally but regionally and internationally too.
I will share with you just a few key figures, which will prove my points concerning the benefits of this transformational journey.
It's basically a comparison between what it was in 2007 when the journey began and what it is now at the end of 2010. These are:
- FUM of BDT 6,733 crore is now 12,775 crore
- Operating profit of BDT 125.6 crore is now BDT 410 crore
- Profit before tax of BDT 81 crore is now BDT 300 crore
- Paid-up capital of BDT 119 crore is now BDT 389 crore
- Shareholder's equity of BDT 287 crore is today BDT 1,152 crore
- Return on assets ratio of 0.7% is now 2.2%
- Return on equity ratio of 12.7% is now 21.3%
- Number of ATMs was nil and today it is 85; and it's reaching 100 by June 2011
- Number of POS as part of cards acquiring business was 400 which is 5,100 today
- Number of Debit cards was nil and it is 135,000 today
- Number of SME business / service centers was nil and it is 25 today
- Non performing loan ratio was 6.2%, which is now 4.4%
Overall, it will not be an exaggeration to say that City Bank is today a successful and innovative Bank that's continuously growing in size and importance. The Bank is well capitalized, has a strong deposit base and a well-diversified client base – all of which we believe put us strategically in sound footing to take the necessary leap forward towards the next course of the journey.
One of the remarkable achievements of 2010 – encompassing both customer satisfaction and brand building – was to open the country's first private sector airport lounge, which is a truly international class lounge situated at the departure zone of the country's main international airport in Dhaka. This 2,210 square feet lounge, capable of serving 60 passengers at a time, and aptly named “City Bank American Express Lounge”, has been overwhelmingly welcomed and appreciated by our existing and future clients alike. This is a proud installation of City Bank, which tremendously helped us gaining more market share (and also mind share) in credit card business.
There were many other notable successes too. We launched the American Express Corporate Card in 2010 which, unfortunately, could not take-off in terms of growth due to some regulatory restrictions but which holds the true potential of changing the expense management horizon of the country's corporate segment someday soon. We also relaunched the Islamic Banking business in 2010. We call it “City Manarah” – a brand name that blends banking and Islamic ideals smartly and very effectively. In 2011 there will be lot of focus in strengthening this Islamic arm of our business.
Among many other priorities of the Bank in the year 2011, I will highlight only one here. You know that the service quality of the Bank attained some notable heights over the past few years. Not only we now manage the Service Quality challenges through a dedicated team of experts and a state-of-the-art Call Center, but also we constantly compare our standards against market benchmarks. As part of that, we ended the year 2010 with an entire branch network-wide Mystery Shop Survey conducted by outside professionals. The result was encouraging. Seeing that reaching the country-best height is not too
far away for us anymore, I then felt prompted to announce the Year 2011 as the “Year of Service Excellence”. Later we kick-started a company-wide campaign in a befitting manner, where I conducted an oath-taking ceremony for the employees at a formal event. Quite a number of initiative sub-sets are in motion now in order to put into reality the philosophy and vision attached to the words “2011 - The Year of Service Excellence”. I believe, our employees will truly make a difference in the marketplace in 2011 with regard to ensuring customer happiness all the way.
City Bank's achievements would of course not have been possible without the continuous hard work, diligence and commitment of our excellent employees. We remain wholeheartedly committed to ongoing investment in training and development of our people.
I thank my colleagues on the Board of Directors for their continued faith in my leadership and their support throughout. I am grateful also to the regulatory authorities for all their support and guidance. My most sincere thanks to Bangladesh Bank, Securities and Exchange Commission, Dhaka Stock Exchange, Chittagong Stock Exchange and Central Depositary Bangladesh Ltd. Your faith in City Bank has encouraged us to stretch ourselves and make a mark. In the end, I thank the many shareholders of the Bank for their continued support throughout the difficult periods of global economic crisis.
The year ahead will have its challenges as our economy continues to recover from global financial crisis and the local
setback posed by the crash of our capital market. However I am quite confident that City Bank will continue to rise up to these challenges by driving efficiency, providing even better products and customer service and delivering an altogether better future.
Aziz Al Kaiser