Bancpost is holding today at Marriott Hotel, Braila Hall, a press conference during which it posts its financial results as at the end of 2004, its projects for the year in progress and the changes in the Board of Directors composition approved by the Ordinary General Shareholders Assembly.
EFG Eurobank management is represented today at the highest level by Mr. Nicholas Nanopoulos, CEO and Mr. David Watson, International Division Director.
Bancpost’s financial performance during 2004 exceeded initial targets and solidified the bank’s presence in the Romanian financial market. Net profits (after taxes) reached 19 million Euro, registering an increase of 64% compared to 2003. This is a particularly positive development if we take into account that 2004 was a year of restructuring, re-organization and new systems implementation.
This performance was the result of a robust increase in operating income, as well as the modest increase of expenses. In particular, total income amounted to 94 million Euro, an increase of 32% compared to 2003. Net interest margin (defined as net interest income divided by average assets) amounted to 7.3%.
Interest income and commission income increases were the result of a strong performance in loan activity. Total loans increased by 82% compared to 2003. In particular, corporate loans increased by 96%, while retail loans increased by 71%.
Thus, Bancpost total assets increased by 74% reaching approximately 1.1 billion Euro at the end of 2004.
Total deposits increased by 24%. Given market conditions, the bank’s liquidity is maintained at satisfactory levels and allows the bank to continue its lending activity, especially in local currency, at high rates.
Despite impressive asset growth and lending activity, as well as the bank’s restructuring and re-organization effort, total operating expenses growth was kept at satisfactory levels, as they increased by 19% compared to 2003. This resulted in an improvement of the cost/income ratio from 78% in 2003 to 70% in 2004.
The quality of the bank’s loan portfolio is also satisfactory. Non-performing loans were 0.9% of total loans, a result due to good credit decisions and effective risk management.
As a result of this performance, return on average assets (ROA) at the end of 2004 amounted to 2.2%, while return on average equity amounted to 22%.
Financial figures (mil Euro)
Under Romanian GAAP
Financial Ratios 2004 (in %)
The effort for restructuring will continue in 2005. New branches are scheduled for Bucharest, several branches will be relocated and others will be refurbished.
Following the implementation of IT infrastructure the bank will be able to offer innovative retail products and services to its customers, in the second half of 2005. The new corporate identity will become more visible, as network restructuring proceeds throughout the country.
During 2005, and despite intense restructuring, Bancpost will continue its quest for market share improvement. The Bank targets an increase of 50% in its total assets and 70% increase of its lending portfolio. Total profits will also increase, albeit at a slower rate, due to higher operating expenses associated with restructuring costs.
During the 2nd half of 2005 Bancpost will implement fully the new business model designed to tap the retail business in a more effective way. This is in line with our vision to become a protagonist in this exciting and fast-growing market.
Mr. Nicholas Nanopoulos, CEO of EFG Eurobank Ergasias, said: “Our actions over the past few years clearly demonstrate, I believe, our long-term, strategic commitment to Romania’s economic development. Our investment here is part of a wider regional strategy, which to date has seen us stake out a presence in Bulgaria, Serbia and recently Turkey as well. As the second largest company in Greece by market capitalisation – we place great importance on our foreign investments. Our aim is for our activities in S.E. Europe to account for 20% of our Group’s consolidated net profits by 2009, up from 4% in 2004.”
On April 20th, 2005, the Ordinary General Shareholders Assembly of Bancpost took place at the bank’s head office.
The participants in the General Assembly approved the change in the Board of Directors structure. Thus, Mr. Mihai Bogza was appointed in the chairperson’s position, left vacant after Mrs. Elena Petculescu resigned.
Mr. Mihai Bogza graduated the Faculty of Commerce – International Economic Relations Section in 1980. After 1990, he acted as General Manager in the Ministry of Finance. Mr. Bogza’s banking experience is also worth mentioning: he worked at Pater Bank, Eximbank - in the capacity as president - and at the National Bank of Romania - in the capacity as Vice Governor.
The CEO position in Bancpost will continue to be held by Mr. Georgios Michelis.
With his international banking expertise covering more than 20 years, during which
he has held significant positions in other reputed banks, he represents a guarantee for the continuity and success of Bancpost on-going projects.
Considering Mrs. Elena Petculescu’s vast experience in the financial and managerial areas as well as the fact that she was the one having set up Bancpost on July 1st, 1991, maintained it clean and far from any political influence during the transition years and contributed to its dynamic development, the General Shareholders Assembly decided to appoint her in the position of Honorary Chairperson of Bancpost.
One more change took also place in the Board of Directors structure, which now is as follows:
Mihai Bogza Chairperson
- Georgios Michelis Member
- David Watson Member
- Theodoros Karakassis Member
- Haralambos Kyrkos Member
- Georgios Alvertis Member
- Georgios Katsaros Member
- Yasmine Ralli Member
- George Orlov Member
- Carmen Dumitrescu Member
- Gabriela Ilie Member
Mr. Mihai Bogza, Chairman of the Bancpost Board of Directors, said: „I am very happy to join the team of EFG Eurobank Ergasias, the most dynamic bank in Greece and one of the most active in the South-Eastern Europe. I am also glad that I will be able to bring my contribution to the development of Bancpost, a solid bank, with a good reputation on the Romanian banking market. I had the opportunity to work in several commercial banks, where I have accumulated a very useful expertise for the following step in my career, when I became the Vice Governor of the National Bank of Romania. That position gave me the possibility to make sure that the Central Bank’s decisions provide real support to the commercial banks, help them improve their activity and offer them new working tools, so highly needed for operating during the transitional period. My appointment as Chairman of Bancpost Board of Directors is a new challenge in my career. Now, I will have the possibility to verify the practical side of the decisions made during the period I have worked with the Central Bank. I hope that my experience will represent a solid support for Bancpost in a key moment of its evolution, the integration within the EFG Eurobank large family.”
Director PR COMMNUNICATION