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Egypt's EFG-Hermes shows highest quarter profits in 4 years

Considerable rise in profits for country's biggest investment bank is largely due to investments from Gulf Cooperation Countries

Ahram Online, Thursday 14 Aug 2014
EFG-Hermes
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Egypt's leading investment bank, Egyptian Financial Group – Hermes (EFG-Hermes), reported on Thursday its highest quarterly profits in four years, citing growth in investments in Gulf Cooperation Countries (GCC).

The group achieved LE188 million ($26.33 million) in profits in the three months ending on 30 June, a considerable rise from the LE80 million ($11.2 million) in losses in the same period a year earlier.

Revenues increased 48 percent to LE747 million ($104.62) from LE506 million ($70.87 million).

The group's core service, investment banking, was the main driver for profitability growth, registering net profits of LE147 million ($20.59 million) in the second quarter of 2014 after registering LE144 million ($20.17 million) in losses the prior year.

During the same period, revenues generated from investment banking climbed 146 percent to LE442 million ($61.9 million) due to higher commission income and sale of part of its stake in Six of October Development and Investment Company (SODIC) for LE97 million ($13.59 million).

For the first half of financial year 2014, the group saw its revenues increase 31 percent to LE1.31 billion ($183.5 million) from LE1 billion ($140.1 million). Hermes investment bank registered an 84 percent rise in revenues while commercial bank (Credit Libanais) revenues declined 1 percent.

Regional operations contributed 45 percent to the investment bank's revenues in the first half of 2014.

Brokerage revenues from investments in the United Arab Emirates achieved a whopping 310 percent increase in the first half of 2014 year-on-year to register LE77 million ($10.78 million). Saudi Arabia followed with a 90 percent rise in revenues to LE10 million ($1.4 million), while Kuwait dropped 41 percent to LE18 million ($2.52 million).

The investment bank has the largest share of the Egyptian market, followed by Kuwait, Oman and the United Arab Emirates.

EFG-Hermes' share price stood at LE18.32 ($2.57) per share in the Egyptian stock exchange on 14 August.

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