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RAK Bank attributes profit rise to prudent lending

Net up 38% as loans register double-digit growth

Graham Honeybill, general manager of RAK Bank
Image Credit: Megan Hirons Mahon/Gulf News
Graham Honeybill, general manager of RAK Bank, celebrates the Dh1 billion in net profitfor the bank last year.
Gulf News

Dubai: National Bank of Ras Al Khaimah (RAK Bank) yesterday reported a net profit of Dh1 billion for 2010, an increase of 38.1 per cent compared to Dh726.2 million in 2009.

RAK Bank's management attributed the record results at a time of sluggish market conditions to prudent lending and investment policies which the bank began adopting as early as 2006.

"When we began our retail-focused lending strategy in 2006, we modified our lending criteria. We looked to the future and anticipated some of the problems that could arise in the retail segment. This helped us immensely during the difficult period," Graham Honeybill, RAK Bank General Manager, told Gulf News in an interview.

Quality assets

The bank's net interest income rose to Dh1.61 billion, up 30.9 per cent over 2009. Total loans and advances as of December 31, 2010 stood at Dh16.4 billion, up 22 per cent over 2009. Total assets increased to Dh21.4 billion.

While the UAE's banking sector as a whole faced significant deleveraging and flat loan growth last year RAK Bank reported double-digit loan growth. The bank's strategy to lend during the crisis helped it acquire some high quality assets

"As RAK Bank continued to lend in 2010, we also took advantage of the significant business opportunities identified in the first six months of the year to increase lending volumes," said Honeybill.

The growth in the asset book has been supported by a combination of increases in shareholder equity and customer deposits, with total deposits growing 32.7 per cent to close at Dh17 billion compared with Dh12.9 billion in 2009.