FNB half-year profits up 11% as app use soars

Cape Town - FNB announced on Tuesday that its banking app usage had increased by 66%, as it reported that its overall profits had increased by 11% for the six months ended December 2017

The bank, which forms the retail banking arm part of FirstRand, released its interim results on Tuesday morning. 

FNB's pre-tax profits grew from R9.3bn to R10.43bn on the back of strong growth in its SA banking businesses, which saw pre-tax profit growth of 12%.

Its South African business contributed R9.8bn to pre-tax profits. 

Its banking portfolio in the rest of Africa remained under pressure, however, with pre-tax profits down 5%. 

But when a once-off profit for FNB India is factored in, this however changed to an increase of 3%. 

FNB CEO Jacques Celliers said in a statement that the bank’s app had experienced “continued growth and increased customer usage”. 

“We are particularly pleased about the number of visitors who are experimenting with new functionality on the platform,” he said. 

“The 11% growth in profitability shows an all-round strong team performance. Deposit growth and strong contribution from our market leading transactional franchise underpinned an excellent domestic performance. The contribution from our African subsidiaries improved from the prior period.”

The share price of FirstRand [JSE:FSR] was up 2.7% on the day at 12:25. 

An appetite for apps 

According to the group’s figures, FNB customers transacted over its app a total of 73.5 million times in the last six months of 2017. This is 66% more than the total of 44.4 million transactions over the same period in 2016.

The app has been downloaded over 1 million times on the Google play store.

FNB internet banking decreased by 1% to 104 million transactions, indicating that some customers were using the app instead of logging onto the group’s website.  

Point of sale transactions, meanwhile, grew by 13% to 659 million. 

In its results overview the bank said that all its customers segments had increased. The “consumer” segment grew  1%, while its premium and commercial customer segments grew by 12% and 7% respectively.


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