Maintaining profitability, growth

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Demerara Bank’s ECD Branch Manager, Shridat Singh (standing second from left) shares a moment with the other staff members

-Demerara Bank’s ECD branch celebrates 8th Anniversary

DESPITE the competitive nature of the banking industry, Demerara Bank’s East Coast Demerara (ECD) branch has been able to maintain profitability and growth over the past eight years.

The bank’s ECD branch, which was opened on October 10, 2011, has been serving customers from Greater Georgetown and the ECD corridor with the same pride and efficiency like the bank’s other six branches. This is according to Demerara Bank’s ECD Branch Manager, Shridat Singh, during a recent interview with the Guyana Chronicle.
“I usually do comparative analysis and I think we are doing fairly well given the fact that we have been opened for only eight years…the statistics show that we have done fairly well,” said Singh, adding that the bank’s ECD branch has been successful since it was opened in 2011.

He said the branch was established at a time when there were major security issues in Georgetown. “We saw it as an opportunity to open a branch on the east coast to facilitate our east coast customers so that they would not have to travel all the way to town,” said the manager.

Singh, who worked his way up the ranks, said he has been at the ECD location since it was established and a day hasn’t gone by without the bank being packed with customers.
The bank, he said, continues to perform at an exceptional rate and has even surpassed its target for the financial year of 2019, which ended on September 30.
“We reached our target long before the financial year concluded,” he said, noting that they are usually tasked with achieving large targets, but it serves as motivation to push forward.
Singh credited the success to the “hardworking” staff of the bank’s ECD branch. The branch has a staff complement of 13 persons.

The bank, he said, opens from Monday-Saturday and offers all the services which can be accessed at the main office or at any other branch. It was reported that Demerara Bank Limited had recorded a profit of $821M after tax for the first quarter of 2019.
According to the bank’s interim financial statements for March 31, 2019, the profit was less than what was recorded for the corresponding period in 2018. Chairman of the Bank, Dr. Yesu Persaud, in his review of the financial institution’s performance, said the company had recorded a profit of $907M for the same period last year. Despite the decrease, he said the bank’s deposits increased from $59.4 billion to $62.6 billion, an increase of five per cent.
In addition, loans and advances moved from $25B to $30B. Based on the financial performance of the first six months of the year, the Board of Directors of the bank has recommended an interim dividend of $0.35 per share. Last year the company paid $0.35 per share as interim dividend.

“The performance of the bank is good considering the challenges we have in the local operating environment,” said Persaud. Global growth is projected around 3.9 per cent in 2019. Guyana’s real growth was 4.1 per cent in 2018 and it may remain in the vicinity of 4 per cent in 2019, said Persaud. Demerara Bank Limited was incorporated on January 20, 1992, as a private limited liability company under the provisions of the Companies Act, Chapter 89:01 and was licensed to carry on the business of banking on October 31,1994.
The bank obtained its Certificate of Continuance on April 2, 1997 in accordance with the Companies Act 1991. The bank offers a complete range of banking and financial services and operates under the Provisions of the Financial Institution Act (Act 1 of 1995).