Abu Dhabi, January 20, 2009- Finance House has reported a record performance for 2008 with net profit surging to AED 248.8 million. This is a 23% rise over the 2007 figure of AED 202.8 million. Total assets grew to AED 2.42 billion, an increase of 12% over the previous year figure of AED 2.16 billion.
The Board has recommended a cash dividend distribution of 50%. “Our 2008 performance bears testimony to the strengths we have built up over the past four years since inception. Our strategy of growth with restraint during the economic boom and our decision to hold back on residential mortgages paid off. Our detection of the liquidity crisis was early and our response was swift, and this has helped us weather the turbulence. As at 31st December 2008 our Shareholders’ Equity stood at AED 795 million and this is after an AED 150 million dividend payment to shareholders in 2008. This strength of the company’s capital base gives us a strong platform for future growth. We did not have any exposure to either US or European assets, and this is due to our stringent criteria towards undertaking exposure, in addition to the company’s strategy of restricting its activities to the UAE and GCC”, said Mr. Mohammed Abdulla Alqubaisi, Chairman of Finance House.
During 2008 Finance House’s loan portfolios grew by an impressive 63%, to 1.15 billion, both the commercial and retail portfolios having recorded significant increases. Over the same period, customer deposits grew by 52% to AED 1.08 billion. We made profitable exits from several investments during the period preceding the financial crisis, and had thus considerably reduced our exposure before the market meltdown. Mr. Alqubaisi added, “Consistent with our strategy, we continue to concentrate on identifying new areas that will offer us the best returns without taking excessive risk, and to develop innovative niche products within such areas. We go into 2009 with a strong capital base, highly liquid financial position, a consistent business strategy, a well diversified portfolio, and are ready for the interesting opportunities being thrown up by a rapidly changing market.”