Gulf Finance House (GFH), a Bahrain based Islamic investment bank, has announced its financial results for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2013.
The year was marked by the resumption of main stream of placement activities and progress on the Bank's strategy of moving towards an exit from a number of investments. For 2013, the Bank posted a net profit of $6.3 million when compared to $10.03 million in 2012. Operating profit, before provisions, for the year 2013 was $9.3 million when compared to $20.43 million for 2012.
The Bank also further enhanced efficiency during 2013, successfully reducing operating costs from $43.15 million in 2012 to $34.6 million, a 20 per cent savings when compared to the prior year. This was mainly attributable to ongoing efforts to streamline operations and reduce facilities across GFH and its subsidiaries.
The Bank reported enhanced results in fourth quarter of 2013 when compared to similar period of 2012. Net profit before provisions for fourth quarter of 2013 stood at $6.2 million with net profit after provisions recorded at $5.2 million when compared to net profit after provision of $2.5 million in fourth quarter of 2012. This is credited to income generated from investment advisory and the sale of investments.
Commenting on the year's results, Dr. Ahmed Al- Mutawa, Chairman of GFH, said, "We're extremely pleased to announce another year of solid performance and results at the Bank. These results, in addition to recently announced Board and management changes, continue to support bolstered market confidence in the Bank, as was affirmed by a healthy credit rating issued to GFH by Capital Intelligence during the second half of the year. They have also set the foundations for further profitable growth in the year ahead."
He continued, "We have entered 2014 in a stronger position and fully intend to build upon this momentum. In doing so, we are confident of our ability to deliver even greater value and returns for our shareholders and co-investors, whose commitment and support, alongside that of our dedicated management team and staff, has made the successes of the past year possible."
Further commenting on the Bank's performance in 2013, Mr. Hisham Alrayes, CEO of GFH said, "Enhanced performance and continued profitability are the result of a sound strategy and its successful execution over the course of the past year. In 2013, we worked hard to deliver on our promise to shareholders and investors by effectively developing solid new income generating opportunities while also supporting growth and value creation across our existing portfolio of investments in order to maximise returns and move closer towards profitable exits."
Highlights for 2013 included the acquisition of a new prime central London residential building, where the Bank expects above average capital appreciation and returns over the medium term and which was oversubscribed by investors. Notably, the year also saw the successful signing for the sale of a 75 per cent stake in Leeds United Football Club to a strategic investor. The sale, currently awaiting the English Football League's final approval, will also support value creation at Leeds to ensure strong future returns on this investment.