Alizz Islamic Bank maintained a strong balance sheet in 2016
In response to market conditions, Alizz Islamic Bank has carefully reviewed its credit policies to avoid sectors that were more vulnerable to volatile conditions and mobilised deposits aggressively to remain liquid at all times. This strategy has helped the bank maintain a strong balance sheet.
The bank’s financing portfolio reached RO312.8mn, registering a growth of 56.8 per cent from the same period in 2015. Deposits grew by RO129.6mn representing a growth of 80.3 per cent. Net operating income grew by 49.6 per cent from 2015 to reach RO8.9mn. Due to the increase in income, cost controls and strong monitoring of credit quality, the net loss of the bank reduced by 11.8 per cent from 2015 to reach RO4.7mn.
Wholesale Banking performed well and grew by 52.8 per cent in terms of financing and 64.8 per cent in terms of deposits from 2015. The bank’s trade finance business has also grown substantially and will remain a key area for growth in 2017. Alizz established a dedicated government and institutional banking division under wholesale banking which provides a full array of banking solutions for government and related entities.
The bank has been granted a license to perform investment banking activities and is currently working on some of the largest transactions in the Omani market.
The treasury and global market division’s focus for 2016 was to play a fundamental role in the most critical element of the bank, namely liquidity management. During the year, the bank’s treasury division evolved into an active player in the Omani Islamic financial market enabling the bank to successfully manage liquidity at all times whilst also ensuring the safekeeping of cash resources enabling effective growth across the bank’s business units.
In expansion mode
Retail banking witnessed exceptional growth and achieved a number of key milestones in 2016 by continuing to focus on providing value-added products and services to the customer. The bank progressed with its growth and expansion strategy during the year, further augmenting its distribution channels and reach by adding multiple customer touch-points and through the strengthening of direct sales teams covered multiple locations across the Sultanate.
Alizz expanded its distribution network by opening a new branch in Muscat, enhancing the network to seven branches. In addition, the bank introduced Oman’s first Sharia-compliant prize based saving product “Bushra” during the year which owing to its unique features became one of the flagship product of the bank in a short space of time. The year 2016 also saw the bank launch, ‘Tharwa’, a segment designed exclusively to provide world class priority banking services to high net-worth Individuals in the country. The launch of Tharwa also saw the launch of the World Master Credit card for this exclusive segment. In an effort to cater to developing needs of customers in the Sultanate, Alizz introduced a Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) banking segment. This segment is designed to meet the expectations of small business customers by providing them with easy financing options.