#Article (Archive)

Trust Bank holds 12th AGM

May 12, 2010, 11:58 AM | Article By: Baboucarr Senghore

Having invested in a sophisticated management platform, Trust Bank Gambia today stands out as the leading and most innovative bank in the country. When the bank started operations in the country's growing banking industry some 13 years ago, it was a unique beginning. The bank made a pledge to Gambians and even non Gambians alike living in the country that it would provide sound, convenient and reliable banking services backed by remarkable corporate social responsibilities. It pledged to bring banking services to the door steps of its ever growing customers across the country.

Today, the bank has delivered on its promises so much so that it has even gone beyond. The bank today employs nearly 300 people and a management team consisting of highly experienced Gambians who have a very strong knowledge of the banking industry. The shareholding is in the hands of institutional investors, both local and foreign, individuals and employees of the Bank.

With its Head Office located at 3-4 Ecowas Avenue Banjul, Trust Bank operates 13 branches in the length and breadth of the country and in advance stages to open more locations before the end of 2010. The bank offers a wide range of products and services that serves the needs of its individual and corporate clientele. In the last few years the bank has invested significant amount of fund to leverage on superior technology to provide more access and convenience to our customers both home and abroad.

The bank yesterday held its 12th Annual General Meeting at the Kairaba Beach hotel. The meeting brought together shareholders of the bank, board members, management and staff of the bank. Among others, the meeting received and adopted the annual report and accounts for the year ended 31st December 2009, declared dividends, approved the remuneration of directors, appoint the auditors of the bank and authorized the board to determine the remuneration of the auditors.

Speaking at the meeting, Ken Ofori Atta, Chairman, Trust Bank Board of Directors noted that the financial services industry remained competitive in 2009 and the entrance of Prime and Skye banks brought the number of banks operating in the country to 13.

For Trust bank, he added, the year 2009 was dedicated to growing and consolidating its position within the industry by reorienting its products, pricing, policies, procedures and personnel to best suit the expectations of all our stakeholders.

"This strategy is expected to continue in the coming years in order to ensure that the bank maintains its position as the preferred bank in this country," he said, adding that the bank will continue to provide gold standard customer oriented culture to ensure even higher customer satisfaction and enhancement for all its customers.

According to the Trust bank chairman, profitability for the banking industry shows a significant decline this year when compared to previous years. This, he noted, can largely be attributed to the economic contractions and the increased competition from the increased number of players in the market.

He revealed that the bank's customer deposits increased from D2.2 Billion to D2.5 Billion representing a growth of 13% and accounting for 25% of total deposits mobilized in the industry. "Shareholders' funds increased by 4% from D270 Million to D281 Million. Net Loans and Advances grew by 3% from D1 Billion to D1.1 Billion and the balance sheet grew by 7% from D2.8 Billion to D3 Billion," he added.

He stated that the bank continues to look for opportunities in domestic as well as international markets. "Our objective to bring banking to the door steps of every Gambian is clear. We are driven by the prospect of penetrating deeper into even the unbanked segments and ensuring that the entire Gambian populace has access to Trust Bank's first class banking services."

He further stated that the bank continues to attach great importance to its human resource management policies out of which compensation and training are given special attention.

For his part, Pa Macoumba Njie, Managing Director, Trust Bank described 2009 as very challenging for Trust Bank. He however noted that it has been a very rewarding year for the bank.

According to him, the bank remained focused on growing its core commercial banking business namely retail and corporate banking. "Despite the growing competition which has resulted in increased choice for customers, our strategy of providing easy, safe and accessible banking coupled with our focus on delivering products and prices that meet our customers expectations has helped us improve our overall market share," Njie said.

He noted with pride that Trust bank by virtue of the strength of its financial position, branch networks and products has once again succeeded in maintaining its position as the most profitable bank and also the bank with the largest balance sheet in the industry.

"The results this year show a resilient revenue performance with total operating revenue after interest expense increasing by 6% from D330 Million to D349 Million. Total asset increased by 7% from D2.8 billion to D3 billion with investment, lending and tangible fixed assets growing by 32%, 3% and 22% respectively," he said.

He further stated that profit after tax declined from D99M to D65M this year mainly due to an increase in provision for loans losses as compared to the previous year . "The significant rise in our impairment levels is largely caused by the impact of the economic deterioration during the year," he said adding that this affected corporate cash inflows for some of their major customers who have had their businesses facing various degrees of stress.

He noted that the bank's policy on employee remuneration continues to be based on a "reward methodology" that links remuneration to the performance and potential of an individual. He also stated that corporate social responsibility has always played a major part in supporting Trust Bank's business strategy.

After 13 years of successful operations, Trust Bank is today a bank that contributed and continues to contribute heavily in the areas of Health, Education and Sports.

In addition to the refurbishment of RVTH Sanatorium in 2007-2008 at a tune of D4M, Trust Bank Limited constructed a new dining hall and laundry room for the RVTH Sanatorium at a cost of D1M. Other beneficiaries of the bank's benevolence to the health sector were the APRC hospital in Farafenni, Leman street clinic Banjul, Gunjur health centre, Brikama health centre and to the National Disaster Relief Management in support of damages suffered by some settlements as a result of the heavy rains.

In the area of Youth and Sports, the Bank continued to make donations to Secondary School sports, U17 National Team, private and public sector football tournaments as well as to the National Youth Service Scheme.

In the field of education, the bank once again awarded prizes to deserving students from Secondary Schools as part of the Excellence in the Millennium Award Scheme and the prices for students were increased to D6,000 each and three schools were awarded D15,000, D10,000 and D5,000 respectively for producing the best outstanding students.

The bank is also associated with the Convocations Committee of the University of The Gambia (UTG). We proudly sponsored the prizes of the most outstanding students in three different disciplines namely Physics, Chemistry and Development Studies and the bank also sponsor the best outstanding students in all the high schools in The Gambia.

The bank's Corporate Social Responsibility objective is to empower the nation through building a stronger, healthier and educated populace. Trust Bank spent far more than any of its competitors towards the social-economic developments of The Gambia that it continues to touch every Gambian either directly or indirectly.

Trust Bank also donated D1M to the Rotary Club of Banjul for their Science Laboratory Project. The bank has since inception been awarded numerous prestigious awards from The Government of The Gambia, local and international institutions, the latest of which are: National Order of the Republic of The Gambia (MRG), Bank of the Year 2009 - GCCI, Bank of the Year for The Gambia - The Banker (UK) and Best Bank Award - 2008 by Global Finance.