From afar, the Nigerian banking industry seems very competitive, but when the financial statements of each bank are examined, double figures running into millions separate them.

In return for their heavy investments, banks and shareholders expect to make a profit. From the audited and reported financials, the profitability of Nigerian banks is not in doubt.

A major factor in banks’ performances was the Covid-19 pandemic, which impacted plans to roll out digital services earlier in the year. Nonetheless, the pandemic worked in their favour as Nigerians increasingly rely on mobile banking for transactions and avoid banking halls for fear of contracting Covid-19.

Methodology: Gross earnings of the company refer to the remaining amount after deducting the cost of goods sold during a given period from the total revenue generated by it from the sale of those goods, before subtracting other expenses, taxes, and adjustments incurred by it during that period.

Access Bank

Nigeria’s largest bank by asset and customer base achieved this amid a decent jump in gross earnings which increased by 13.6%, totalling N450.6 billion.

The company has also seen its net interest income after impairment increase by 56% to N171.4 billion, its customers’ deposits growing by N5.97 trillion.

A total of N10.7 billion has also been allocated by the Board of Directors of Access Bank Plc as dividends to shareholders for the period ended 30th of June, 2021.

It’s important to note, however, that PricewaterhouseCoopers’ independent auditors noted increased provisioning by the bank for loans that could prove unsustainable in the future, as this trend may limit the bank’s upside.

Zenith Bank

Its gross earnings for the half year of 2021 decreased by 0.15% from N346.09 billion in the first quarter of 2020.

In addition to its loan advances and customer deposits, Nigeria’s largest bank by shareholders funds reported growth in both areas.

Based on its audited interim report for the half-year ended June 2021, the bank’s net interest income for H1 2021 grew by 1.61% to N159.94 billion from N157.41 billion a year earlier.

Michael Otu, the bank’s Company Secretary, said in a statement that shareholders whose names appear in the register of members on the 10th day of September 2021, will receive an interim dividend of 30 kobo for each share of N50k.


The gross earnings of Nigeria’s third most profitable bank rose from N300.6 billion to N316 billion, while assets rose from N7.7 trillion to N8.3 trillion.

Deposits by customers crossed the N6 trillion mark as well, growing by 7.4% to N6.1 trillion in the period under review, compared to N5.7 trillion as of December 2020.

UBA Plc Board of Directors has declared an interim dividend of 20 kobo per share for every ordinary share of 50 kobo each that is held by shareholders as per its culture of paying interim and final cash dividends.


According to one of Nigeria’s oldest banks, gross earnings were N291.2 billion (-1.7% year over year). A 22% decline in Interest Income caused by a 56% drop in Investment Securities Income led to the earnings drop.

Operating expenses surged up by 9.6% y/y, as all major contributory lines spiked – personnel expenses (+3.4% y/y to N51.24 billion), AMCON levy (+35.4% y/y to N30.68 billion), and NDIC premium (+9.4% y/y to N6.81 billion).

Managing Director of FBN Holding, U.K. Eke stated that owing to the COVID-19 pandemic and low-interest rates, macroeconomic conditions remain challenging. FBN Holdings is confident that it will continue to deliver innovative solutions that will enrich customer experiences as well as deepen financial inclusion, despite these negative factors negatively impacting overall revenue generation.


Nigeria’s most valuable bank by market value and second most profitable bank last year reported a 7.65% decline in gross earnings.

As published in the company’s audited half-year report, its gross earnings for H1 2021 fell from N225.14 billion in the corresponding period of 2020 to N207.91 billion.

Net interest income declined by 16.11% from N127.62 billion in H1 2020 to N107.06 billion in H1 2021. Profit before tax fell by N166.58 million to N93.06 billion, and earnings per share dropped to N2.79 from N3.32.