banking

ABA Bank Announces $212.02m Profits

Despite the challenges presented by the pandemic throughout 2021, ABA Bank has announced multi-million-dollar profits, a 50 percent increase in customers and 28 percent growth in assets to $7.9 billion.
Passengers drive past ABA bank in Kandal province on November 25, 2021. Picture: stringer
Passengers drive past ABA bank in Kandal province on November 25, 2021. Picture: stringer

Advanced Bank of Asia (ABA) raked in a staggering $212.02 million in net profits for 2021’s fiscal year despite the challenges dealt by the pandemic, its chairman Yves Jacquot said.

ABA’s total assets grew by 28 percent to $7.9 billion, while its deposit portfolio increased by 29 percent to $6.3 billion. In addition, ABA’s loan portfolio recorded 38 percent growth to $5.3 billion, Jacquot said in an annual report to Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) released on Tuesday.

In 2021, ABA’s customer base also doubled, hitting 2.1 million, Jacquot said. He added the bank also paid $61.5 million in taxes to the government.

“ABA witnessed strong growth across all key metrics, including total assets, deposits, loans, and customer base despite the challenging year,” Jacquot said.

“These results are driven by ABA's successful implementation of its business strategy, emphasizing convenient digital financial services and productive loans to microbusinesses and SMEs in the economy's real sectors.”

Askhat Azhikhanov, ABA’s Chief Executive Officer, said in the report that as of the end of 2021, there were 13,641 restructured loans with $698 million outstanding. He added the bank will continue helping borrowers overcome the hardships of Covid-19.

ABA is a subsidiary of the National Bank of Canada, a financial institution with about $279 billion in assets as of 31 October 2021. It is the sixth largest bank in Canada.

In its report, ABA said as of the time of publication, Cambodia has more than 60 commercial and specialized banks and 100 microfinance institutions (MFIs) serving 16 million Cambodians.

At the same time, banking services' penetration is still relatively poor due to comparatively low financial literacy and infrastructure development. Therefore, banks are actively searching for new ways to broaden financial inclusion.

The bank said the Cambodian economy is slowly recovering from Covid. However, it continues to believe the situation is a key risk for the Cambodian economy and ABA. Additionally, potential economic ripple effects, such as fuel prices and imported commodities and goods, from the developing Ukrainian crisis must be closely monitored.