• Gross loan portfolio growth of 2.8% (Q1 2017: 2.5%) to EUR 4.0 billion
• Group results of EUR 14.6 million in first quarter of 2018, significantly above the Q1 results of the previous year (Q1 2017: EUR 11.9 million)
• More robust capital base thanks to a successful increase in the company’s share capital
• Full-year forecast confirmed
ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA (ProCredit Holding) reports that the ProCredit group, which is primarily active in South Eastern and Eastern Europe, is off to a good start in the 2018 financial year. Positioned in its markets as the Hausbank for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), the ProCredit group has achieved growth of 2.8%, i.e. EUR 111 million, in its gross loan portfolio since the beginning of the year, to EUR 4.0 billion (31 December 2017: EUR 3.9 billion). This result exceeds the growth of the gross loan portfolio reported in the first quarter of the previous year (Q1 2017: 2.5%, i.e. EUR 92 million). The strong growth trend was recorded in all South Eastern and Eastern European ProCredit banks.
The ProCredit group’s result for the first quarter of 2018 amounted to EUR 14.6 million, which is considerably higher than the result for the same period of the previous year (Q1 2017: EUR 11.9 million). The measures that were successfully implemented in the previous financial year to increase efficiency in the branch network and to expand digital banking services are now clearly reflected in falling operating expenses. Staff and administrative expenses decreased by 11.8%, or EUR 5.6 million, relative to the previous year’s level. The group result was also positively influenced by the reduced risk provisioning expenses, which amounted to EUR 0.1 million (Q1 2017: EUR 3.0 million). The low expenses for loan loss provisions are a consequence of higher repayments of non-performing loans as well as from income from loans that had already been written off. The improvement in portfolio quality is illustrated by the development in the share of non-performing loans in the overall loan portfolio. Over the course of the first quarter, this share decreased from 4.8% as at 31 December 2017 to 4.4%. Thus, despite the low level of additions to allowance for impairment, the coverage ratio for these loans increased by 1.7 percentage points to 83%.
The share of the green loan portfolio, with which the ProCredit banks support environmentally responsible projects, continued to climb and accounted for 13.3% of the overall loan portfolio as at 31 March (31 December 2017: 12.6%).
The cost-income ratio decreased for the first three months of 2018 to 70.2%, compared to a ratio of 73.8% for the entire 2017 financial year, and can be attributed to the successful implementation of cost efficiency measures.
The return on equity (RoE) stood at 8.2% as at 31 March 2018. Compared to the same period of the previous year, the RoE improved by 1.2 percentage points (Q1 2017: 7.0%), despite the increase in the equity base.
The increase in the CET1 ratio from 13.7% at the end of 2017 to 14.4% as at 31 March 2018 shows that the ProCredit group’s capital base further improved in the first three months of 2018. Among other factors, the successful 10% capital increase carried out in February 2018 had a significant influence on this ratio. With gross proceeds of the share issue of around EUR 61 million, ProCredit will continue on its growth course and expand its customer business with SMEs in the ProCredit banks, especially in South Eastern and Eastern Europe.
Borislav Kostadinov, member of the Management Board of ProCredit General Partner AG (sole liable managing entity of ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA), commented: “Thanks to our clear strategic focus, the ProCredit banks have built up an excellent reputation among SMEs with good development prospects. This is once again clearly reflected in the growth of our loan portfolio. We are therefore pleased with the growth and results for the first quarter of 2018.”
ProCredit reconfirms its forecast of growth of 12% to 15% in the gross loan portfolio for the year as a whole. The cost-income ratio is expected to improve further in the 2018 financial year, falling to less than 70%. Depending on the development of the net interest margin and loan portfolio growth, the RoE is expected to remain at 7.5% to 8.5% for the current financial year. It is projected that the Common Equity Tier 1 capital ratio (CET1 fully loaded) will continue to exceed 13%.
The group’s quarterly report is available in the German and English languages as of today on the ProCredit Holding website under Investor Relations at https://www.procredit-holding.com/en/investor-relations/reports-publications/financial-reports/.
Andrea Kaufmann, Group Communications, ProCredit Holding, Tel.: +49 69 951 437 138,
About ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA
ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA, based in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, is the parent company of the development-oriented ProCredit group, which consists of commercial banks for small and medium enterprises (SMEs). In addition to its operational focus on South Eastern and Eastern Europe, the ProCredit group is also active in South America and Germany. The company’s shares are traded on the Prime Standard segment of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The anchor shareholders of ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA include the strategic investors Zeitinger Invest and ProCredit Staff Invest (the investment vehicle for ProCredit staff), the Dutch DOEN Participaties BV, KfW Development Bank and IFC (part of the World Bank Group). As the group’s superordinated company according to the German Banking Act, ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA is supervised on a consolidated level by the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht, BaFin) and the German Bundesbank. Further information is available on our website: www.procredit-holding.com
This report contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements that do not describe past events. They include statements on the assumptions and expectations of ProCredit Holding as well as underlying assumptions. These statements are based on the plans, estimates and forecasts currently available to the Management of ProCredit Holding. Forward-looking statements therefore pertain solely to the date on which they are made. ProCredit Holding undertakes no obligation to update these statements in the event of new information or future events. Forward-looking statements naturally involve risks and uncertainties. A number of important factors can contribute to the fact that actual results may differ materially from forward-looking statements. These factors could include major disruptions in the Eurozone, a significant change in foreign trade or monetary policy, a worsening of the interest rate margin or pronounced exchange rate fluctuations. Should any of these factors arise, the impact could be manifested in decreased loan portfolio growth and an increase in past-due loans, and thus result in lower profitability.