CEC Bank ended the year 2018 with a gross profit of Lei 432.97Mill., meaning the best financial performance in the last 11 years as a result of the successful implementation of the adopted strategies and the sustained efforts of the Bank’s employees.
In 2018, the current loan portfolio related to legal person – customers increased by about 13.1% compared to 2017, while such indicator at the level of the banking system increased only by 6.8%. The Bank also has increased the current loan portfolio related to natural person – customers, which increased by 7.3% in 2018 compared to the previous year.
As for the volume of the new loans given in 2018, it increased by about 5.34% in 2018 compared to 2017, reaching approximate Lei 7 billions.
However, the lending activity had a much higher growth rate than that obtained based on the balance sheet balances as loans to customers operating in agriculture are given and fully repaid during the year 2018, while partially, loans approved in 2018 and not used until the end of the year are not reflected in the balance-sheet balance.
Continuing the policy of supporting the absorption of European Funds, the Bank financed by the end of 2018 a number of 48,046 eligible projects for accessing these funds, for which the sum of grants amounted to Lei 13,932 million.
The balance of deposits attracted from non-bank customers registered a 1.1% increase in 2018 compared to the previous year, given that the Bank has enough liquidity and has applied a policy of tempering the attraction of such sources. This result denotes once again that CEC Bank's core values - trust, honesty, stability - continue to be recognized and appreciated.
Throughout 2018, the Bank experienced a significant improvement in asset quality. Thus, the rate of non-performing exposures on loans and advances recorded on 31/12/2018 a level of 6.01%, decreasing by 3.09 pp compared to the level recorded on 31/12/2017. The rate of non-performing loans out of loans and advances to individuals, with a level of 1.96% as of 31/12/2018 (below the average of 4.81% in the banking system), reflects a high quality of the loan portfolio to individuals, decreasing by 0.95 pp compared to the level recorded on 31/12/2017. The positive trend in the quality of the loan portfolio remains in the current year.
The level of the total equity ratio of 17.3% as of 31/12/2018 reflects an efficient use of capital. From a qualitative point of view, the Bank's equity was entirely constituted from Common Equity Tier 1 capital.
The net balance of the balance sheet at the end of 2018 was Lei 29,320.35 million, down 7.4% compared to 2017, as a result of the decrease in the amount available in account to the NBR, in line with the level of minimum required reserves during the application period. This led to a decrease in the market share by volume of assets, from 7.41% at the end of 2017 to 6.51% at the end of 2018, while the Bank maintained its position in the top 7 banks in the Romanian banking system.
CEC Bank offers a full range of financial products and services, continuing in 2018 to invest in modern services and products, emphasizing digital component to provide customers with accessibility and convenience. Thus, in 2018, the Bank recorded substantial increases in electronic and digital operations, up 11% over the year 2017. The bank's customers benefit from a national network of 1,214 ATMs and 6,704 POSs, as well as full Internet Banking, Mobile Banking and Phone Banking services. CEC Bank is the top 10 bank with the largest territorial network with 1,024 units, out of which 480 are located in the countryside, preserving its leadership position on this segment after years of crisis.
"According to the assumed mission, CEC Bank will continue to support SMEs, agriculture, local public administrations and the population, paying special attention to the co-financing of projects funded by European funds. For 2019 we aim an increase in activity, especially in the lending area, with visible impact over the profitability increase and prudential indicator improvements. On 30/04/2019, the Bank obtained a gross profit of Lei 153.2 million, significantly higher than the targets assumed for the period January-April 2019", said Mr. Laurentiu Mitrache, General Manager - Chairman of the Board of Directors of CEC Bank.