Fitch Ratings has revised the National Long-Term Rating of Coronation Merchant Bank to ‘BBB+ (nga)’ from ‘BBB (nga)’. The global rating agency also affirmed the Bank’s Long-Term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at ‘B-‘ with a Stable Outlook.
According to Fitch, the upgrade is a result of the Bank’s improved creditworthiness relative to that of other issuers in Nigeria. The agency added that the bank’s weaknesses are balanced by “the Bank’s sound asset-quality record, adequate capitalization and performance, which constitute rating strengths”.
The agency further stated that Coronation Merchant Bank “has recorded zero Stage 3 loans since converting to a merchant bank in 2015, despite the volatile market conditions that have characterized the local operating environment. The Bank’s ability to maintain quality assets reflects its prudent underwriting standards and risk controls. It reports no stage 2 loans nor loans benefitting from COVID-19 related debt relief measures”.
Commenting on the upgraded rating, Banjo Adegbohungbe, Managing Director/CEO of Coronation Merchant Bank, stated that, “Receiving a rating upgrade during this challenging period demonstrates the strength of our business model, the prudence of our risk management culture and the commitment of our staff to build a premier African institution. We remain focused on delivering sustainable value to our clients and stakeholders”.
Commenting on the rating, Chukwukadibia Okoye, the Chief Financial Officer of the Bank stated that “despite the volatility of our operating environment and several macro economic headwinds, the Bank has shown commendable resilience while maintaining a very healthy balance sheet”
About Coronation Merchant Bank
Coronation Merchant Bank was established in 2015 to provide wholesale banking to a long-underserved market. The Bank offers Corporate & Investment Banking, Private Banking/Wealth Management and, Global Markets/Treasury Services to its niche clientele. It presently has two branches located in Abuja and Port Harcourt with its Head Office in Lagos, Nigeria.
The Bank has been the recipient of numerous international and national awards for product innovation and sound corporate governance practices. Some of the international awards it received in 2021, 2020 and 2019 include Best Investment Bank in Nigeria by Global Finance, Best Investment Bank in Nigeria by World Finance, Best Investment Bank in Nigeria by Global Banking & Finance Review, Best Investment Bank by Global Business Outlook and Best Investment Bank in Nigeria by International Finance.
The Bank’s nimble business strategy has enabled it to record considerable success in the few years of its operations. The bank has been rated ‘B-‘ with a Stable Outlook by Fitch, one of the ‘Top 3’ global rating agencies, making it the first and only Nigerian Merchant Bank to receive an international risk rating. It has also attained a strong investment grade rating of “A+” with a stable outlook in 2021 (the highest among Merchant Banks in Nigeria) from Nigeria’s foremost rating Agency – Agusto & Co.