The Bank’s performance results demonstrate a positive trend
In Q4 2018, the Bank’s financial performance surpassed the cumulative financial result gained over the first three quarters of 2018. For the Bank, the 2018 was a busy one and its main features were Bank-specific changes and optimisation efforts. The Bank’s senior management successfully implemented its cost-optimisation and income-boosting plan. The total customer funds reached EUR 499 million. By the end of 4Q 2018, the assets under management totalled EUR 74.34 million. The volume of financial instruments in brokerage service has also shown a positive. The Bank continues to contribute to its new business strategy geared towards customers who display investment needs and possess the investment potential.
At present, the situation in the financial sector, both in Latvia and worldwide, is quite challenging. To achieve the Bank’s strategic goal, namely, to become a sustainable investment bank and continue as a stable business partner for its customers in the Baltic States and Europe, the Bank should work in two directions. Firstly, we ourselves need to perform maximally effectively and efficiently. We have invested towards developing new digital infrastructure and towards developing and implementing investment services, including arrangement of corporate bonds issue and improvement of customer service. Our second direction envisages a purposeful cooperation with public bodies and the Finance Latvia Association. We intend to attain, through a common dialogue, stringent conformity of the Latvian financial sector with international standards and to restore the country’s reputation and stability. One more task of paramount importance is to maintain a close relationship with our customers in Latvia and in foreign markets and hence ensure an ongoing provision 0f top-quality services. The Bank’s business-related strategic principles remain unchanged: we intend to ensure appropriate, compliant and transparent performance and to provide bespoke banking services while staying focused on sustainable investments-based approach. Viktors Bolbats Chairperson of the Management Board
In the light of the overall situation faced by the sector, Bank firmly believes that Latvia-based banks need to shape a sustainable business model with the underlying corporate governance principles, including the fight against financial crimes. In 2018, Baltic International Bank invested money towards enhancing professional qualification of its employees and their expertise in the fight against financial crimes in accordance with international standards. For instance, all of the employees involved in implementing the Know Your Customer (KYC) and Know Your Customer`s Partner (KYCP) principles have undergone an in-depth AML/CFT training. The Bank has also made relevant amendments to its AML/CFT policy and related procedures.
In 4Q 2018, the Bank’s operating income totalled EUR 14.88 million. Compared to 2017, Bank succeeded to close the year 2018 with a higher operating income and more lenient operating expense. The Bank has increased its fee and commission income in a skyrocketing manner. The percentage of the net fee and commission income surged up to 56.9 percent compared to the same period last year when the net fee and commission income totalled 25.6 percent. The net interest income totalled 24.1 percent. The volume of administrative expenses totalled EUR 13.39 million. The Bank's senior management succeeded to combine cost optimisation and income boosting and hence achieve perceptible effectiveness and to explore and pinpoint possibilities for investing in the Bank’s development and improving customer service. The Bank made impressive progress towards gaining larger amount of fee and commission income for customer service, investment services, brokerage services and asset management services.
Still, the Bank’s balance sheet remains conservative, and the Bank maintains the high liquidity ratio. The liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) was 247 percent. The net stable funding ratio (NSFR), characterizing the availability of a stable funding profile in relation to the composition of assets and off-balance sheet activities, reached 153.6 percent. The Bank’s high-quality liquid assets (assets carrying investment-grade credit rating and balances due from the Bank of Latvia) made up EUR 159.40 million or 56 percent of the total assets. Investments in government bonds accounted for EUR 17.5 million or 6.1 percent of the total assets. The Bank maintains a well-diversified structure of liquid assets represented by bonds (13 percent), due from credit institutions (7 percent), due from the Bank of Latvia (79 percent) and cash (1 percent).
As of 31 December 2018, the Bank’s own funds totalled EUR 24.39 million. The Bank’s Tier I capital ratio (CETI) was 9.63 percent. The total SREP ratio (TSCR ratio) reached 13.70 percent.
As the Bank continues to support Latvian literature and its development, it implemented a project titled “Library” in 4Q 2018. The project aims to educate the public regarding the importance of literature in people’s lives and to tell people about private libraries and collections held in private libraries, as well as emotional and educational attributes of the collections. The project involves Latvian literati and other active shapers of the literary life in Latvia. Baltic International Bank organised creative works competition aimed at school students. The Ērgļi high school was the first place winner and won the top prize, 100 books for their school library. The renowned jury that included a brilliant Latvian writer Nora Ikstena evaluated the student works. The Bank’s employees brought a plenty of books, and the Bank donated them to People’s Bookshelf (Tautas grāmatu plaukts) located in the atrium of the National Library of Latvia. Thus, the Bank has excelled itself by placing a strong emphasis on one of the Bank’s core values, namely, SUCCESSION. Books offer a unique opportunity to preserve legacy and pass on fundamental values to the next generations.
To implement the Bank’s long-term plans, create a convenient environment for its employees and customers and foster its sustainability, the Bank launched an ambitious refurbishment and regeneration of the Old Riga quarter situated between Kalēju Street and Vecpilsētas Square. Within the 5-year timeframe, the Bank intends to allocate nearly EUR 12 million towards the project. During the first phase of the project, the Bank will provide its employees with modern workplace premises. During the second phase, the Bank will offer the local businesspeople premises for business development.
Largely due to its business model and string adherence to corporate governance principles, sustainable business principles and socially responsible initiatives, in 2018 Baltic International Bank received the Gold Award from the annual Sustainability Index and the Family-Friendly Company Status.
The Bank’s (Group’s) key financial indicators:
|Assets:||EUR 287,28 million
(EUR 287,27 million)
|EUR 272,34 million
(EUR 272,09 million)
|Value of financial instruments in brokerage:||EUR 178 million||EUR 199 million|
|Loss:||EUR 305 thousand
(EUR 498 thousand)
|EUR 2,35 million
(EUR 2,55 million)