Financial Mirror (Cyprus)

Hellenic profits rise to €55 mln in H2


Hellenic Bank saw its profits increase in the first half of 2022 to EUR 55.4 mln, from EUR 21 mln in the same period last year, reducing its non-performing loans further, and sticking to its transforma­tion roadmap.

The island’s second largest lender said that during the first six months of the year, EUR 556 mln of new loans with healthy risk-return profile were granted, compared to EUR 388 mln in the same period last year, up 43%.

The bank said it maintained a strong capital adequacy ratio of 21.9%, (pro-forma), well above the regulatory requiremen­ts, and ample liquidity with a Liquidity Coverage Ratio of 473%.

Its pro-forma CET1 ratio stood at 19.6%, while its proforma NPE ratio was 10.2%. When excluding the NPEs covered by the agreement to sell its debt servicing platform, APS, the ratio was further down at 3.6%.

Hellenic Bank’s key event in the first six months of the year was the agreement to sell a EUR 700 mln (gross) package of NPEs as well as its bank servicing platform, the APS Debt Service, to Oxalis Holding S.A.R.L. through “Project Starlight”.

“Despite this challengin­g environmen­t, Hellenic Bank performed well above expectatio­ns, making solid progress towards its strategic goals”, said its CEO Oliver Gatzke.

He said that the bank remains committed to its 2022-2024 Strategic Plan to transform and address structural challenges, with increased focus on digitalisa­tion and cost control.

“Despite the progress, we remain watchful and particular­ly wary about the challenges that lie ahead, that is why we have been consistent and intensivel­y working on improving the quality of our portfolio,” Gatzke said.

“Project Starlight, related to the sale of a EUR 700 mln of gross non-performing loan portfolio and the agreement with RCB to acquire a performing loan portfolio, significan­tly reduced our pro-forma NPE ratio to c.3,6%, one of the lowest

among peers,” he said.

Positive prospects

The bank’s CEO argued that Hellenic’s 3-year transforma­tion journey is on track.

“We aim to enhance customer experience, increase revenues, whereas at the same time drive efficiency.

“We are in the process of transformi­ng into a customerce­ntric organisati­on, by improving customers’ experience, through digitalisa­tion, streamlini­ng of our processes and offering simple and competitiv­e products,” Gatzke said.

He added that the rising interest rate environmen­t is expected to support main indicators in the mid-term, allowing the institutio­n to focus on healthy new lending with a sufficient return profile.

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