Posted on February 03, 2019

International Bank of Qatar (ibq) announced its 2018 financial results recording a net profit of QAR 747.2 million for the year, ending 31 December 2018, versus QAR 555.1 million in 2017. In addition to a very strong operating performance that saw 15.3% growth in net profits, the bank benefitted from one off non-recurring transactions that increased the final figure to QAR 747.2 million. The ibq balance sheet grew by 6.3% over 31 December 2017 to QAR 35.2 billion.

ibq’s strong performance can be attributed primarily to its strategy to exclusively focus on the Qatar domestic market, and put all its efforts in serving to the highest standards its exceptional client base. All operating metrics have improved and the cost income ratio continued to shrink for the third year in a row, reflecting ibq unwavering cost discipline.

All business segments, this year again, positively contributed to year-on-year total income growth. In 2018, operating income growth of 7.9% to QAR 956.2 million was achieved. This growth reflected a marked improvement in revenue quality, as it was largely driven by higher non-interest income in the form of higher fee and commission income increasing by 15.1% and foreign exchange income increasing by 28.4% on 2017. ibq’s Return on Average Assets (ROAA) of 2.3% 2018, and Return on Average Equity (ROAE) of 16.5%, representing a 27.8% and 36.4%, improvement on 2017 respectively, emphasizing the strong performance of 2018.

As before, ibq risk management has remained intense and extremely proactive, which allowed the bank, in spite of the complex and volatile environment, to achieve a Non Performing Loan (NPL) ratio of 1.2%, among the best in the industry. Throughout the year, ibq maintained adequate liquidity at all times, and pursued its strategy of reducing its reliance on interbank funding by growing customer deposits. Customer deposits grew 15.4%, while the bank’s capital position remained strong during 2018 ensuring that ibq is always in a position to serve its clients and support them in their growth.

Commenting on ibq’s 2018’s performance, Omar Bouhadiba, Managing Director said: “These results highlight the resilience of ibq and the strength of its Qatar focused business model. We continued achieving our set long-term objective to deliver to the shareholders sustainable quality double digit net profits growth. The quality and sustainability of this growth, basically driven by non-interest income, is highly satisfying. Risk was managed very competently by our teams, and reliance on the volatile interbank funding was tremendously reduced to be replaced with customer deposits.”

“These results were only achievable through the support of ibqs exceptionally loyal customers, a very supportive Board of Directors and a dedicated, focused and competent team. ibq is in a very healthy position looking forward to the exciting next chapter combining forces with Barwa Bank. This journey was made possible by the continuous support by the Qatar Central Bank ensuring a very healthy and stable banking environment” he added.

H.E. Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jabor Al-Thani, ibq Chairman, stated: “I am delighted with the excellent results achieved by ibq in 2018, notwithstanding the complex operating environment experienced in Qatar. ibq is in a strong financial position and will add immediate benefits to the imminent merger with Barwa Bank. On behalf of the Board of Directors, we express our gratitude to management and staff for their dedication and hard work throughout the year. We also want to use this opportunity to express our unreserved appreciation to the loyal ibq customer base for their ongoing support over the years”.

The 2018 financial results are subject to approvals from Qatar Central Bank and ibq Annual General Assembly.