• CBN sanctioned Zenith Bank Plc for violating banking regulations in 2019.
  • According to the financial statement, the bank incurred N21 million in penalties and fines.
  • Despite the sanctions, Zenith Bank Plc made N208.8 billion profit in 2019. 

Nigeria's tier-1 bank, Zenith Bank Plc, was fined about N21 million for violating various banking regulations set by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in 2019.

The details are contained in the bank's audited financial statement for the year ended December 2019 released on Friday, February 21st, 2020.

The bank said it incurred the penalties and fines due to “contraventions of the regulations of the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act, 1991.

Jim Ovia, Founder and Chairman of Zenith Bank Plc
Jim Ovia, Founder and Chairman of Zenith Bank Plc

Details of the fines seen by Business Insider SSA showed that Zenith Bank Plc received N2 million fine for an incomplete document of newly opened account, another N2 million for non-compliance with Automated Teller Machines (ATM) installation procedures, and N2 million for non-compliance with the anti-money laundering procedures within the financial year.

The bank also received another N15 million penalty for improper classification of corporate accounts.

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Zenith Bank Plc 2019 FY
Zenith Bank Plc 2019 FY

Zenith Bank Plc posts N208.8 billion profit in 2019

Despite all these, the bank recorded N208.8 billion ($574.4 million) as profit after tax, representing 8% growth from the N193 billion recorded in the previous year.

Other highlights from the report include:

  • Gross earnings posted a 5% growth to N662.3 billion from N630.3 billion
  • Non-interest income grew from N179.9 billion in 2018 to N231.1 billion in 2019.
  • Fees on electronic products posted a 108% growth from N20.4 billion in 2018 to N42.5 billion in 2019.
  • Profit before tax also increased by 5% growing from N232 billion to N243 billion in the current year.
  • Return on equity (ROE) stands at 23.8%
  • Return on assets (ROA) stands at 3.4%.
  • Liquidity (57.3%) and capital adequacy (22.0%) ratios remained above regulatory thresholds.

Despite increased loans, analysts at CardinalStone Research said the bank's loans to deposit ratio, at 56.3%, came short of CBN's 65.0% guidelines.