The Worawora-Asubonten Rural Bank Limited has maintained its position throughout the 2008 fiscal year as the best managed rural and community bank in the country, Seth Wilson Antwi, chairman of the bank’s board of directors has announced.
He said the bank’s feat was chalked after an assessment of 124 rural and community banks nationwide, under the ambit of the ARB Apex Bank Limited.
Mr Antwi made the announcement at the eighth annual general meeting of the bank at Worawora, in the newly created but yet-to-be-commissioned Biakoye District at the weekend.
He said its net profit before tax rose to GH¢108,077 as of December 2008, compared to GH¢73,769 it recorded within the same period in 2007, representing a 47 per cent.
Mr Antwi said the bank’s deposits inched up from GH¢1.19 million in 2007, to GH¢1.23 million in the year under review.
He disclosed that in 2008 it granted loans and overdrafts to 1,305 beneficiaries totaling GH¢584,594, compared to GH¢330,650 it granted in 2007, an increase of about 74 per cent.
The board chairman said the bank’s current stated capital of GH¢151,913 compared to the 2007 figure of GH¢50,863, has outstripped the new Bank of Ghana’s minimum operational capital of GH¢150,000.
Based on this sterling performance, the board of directors and management have decided to pay dividend of GH¢0.41 per share to shareholders as of December 31, 2008.
Mr Antwi added that the e-Zwitch new product was at the pilot stage, and that Western Union Money Transfer, which is operational at the Worawora and Hohoe branches, was expected to be extended to other agencies and branches.
He said the bank would continue to expand its services in its catchment areas to bring banking to the doorsteps of its clientele.
Mr Joshua Odoom, Supervising Manager of the bank, said shareholders’ funds rose to GH¢246,867 within the year under review, as against GH¢178,317 it recorded in 2007, making an increment of 38 per cent.
He said total assets grew by 15 per cent to GH¢1.63 million in 2008 from the GH¢1.41 it recorded in 2007.
Mr Odoom added that total clients reached 11,120 within the period being evaluated from 8,968 registered in 2007, representing an increase of 24 per cent.
Nana Boakye Mensah, board member who presided at the function, commended board members, shareholders, management and staff and customers alike for agreeing to do business with the bank even in the face of stiff competition, falling interest rates and global recession.