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RNS Number : 1724Z
ASA International Group PLC
16 May 2019
 

16 May 2019

ASA International Group plc

Q1 2019 Trading Update

ASA International Group plc, one of the world's largest international microfinance institutions, today announces a trading update for the first quarter period from 1 January 2019 to 31 March 2019 ("the Period").

Key highlights:

 

1Q

2019

FY

2018

1Q

2018

YoY

1Q

2019

 

YoY % Change

(constant currency)

Number of Clients (m)

2.2

2.2

1.9

14%

2%

n/a

Number of Branches

1,745

1,665

1,496

17%

5%

n/a

OLP (USD m)

394

378

329

20%

4%

32%

OLP/client average (USD)

178

174

169

5%

2%

15%

 

·     Number of clients up by 2% to 2,220,240

·     Outstanding Loan Portfolio (OLP) up by 4% to USD 394.2m

·     Stable underlying operating performance in line with expectations across all segments

·     Quality of OLP remained stable with PAR>30 at 0.5%

·     Lending operations commenced in Zambia and reported under East Africa segment

·     Currencies stabilised against the USD across all markets except for higher than expected Ghanaian Cedi (GHS) depreciation in March (which broadly corrected in April)

Dirk Brouwer, Chief Executive, commented:

"Performance during the first quarter of 2019 remains in line with expectations, with continued growth in branch and client numbers across all our operating regions. This was achieved despite the customary reduction in demand for loans, particularly in Africa, following the holiday season.

We expect growth to further strengthen for the remainder of the year."

Regional performance:

South Asia

 

 

1Q

2019

FY

2018

1Q

2018

YoY

1Q

2019

 

YoY % Change

(constant currency)

Number of Clients (m)

1.1

1.1

1.0

13%

3%

n/a

Number of Branches

667

638

587

14%

5%

n/a

OLP (USD m)

227

212

195

16%

7%

30%

OLP/client average (USD)

208

201

203

3%

4%

15%

 

·     Number of clients grew to 1,087,626, up by 3%

·     OLP (including the off-book IDFC portfolio in India) expanded to USD 226.7m, up by 7%

·     Off-book IDFC BC Portfolio up by 5% in Q1 2019 to USD 41.8m, up by 95% year-on-year (YoY) and up by 108% on a constant currency basis

 

 

South East Asia

 

1Q

2019

FY

2018

1Q

2018

YoY

1Q

2019

 

YoY % Change

(constant currency)

Number of Clients (m)

0.5

0.4

0.4

9%

4%

n/a

Number of Branches

388

369

345

13%

5%

n/a

OLP (USD m)

67

62

54

24%

9%

31%

OLP/client average (USD)

147

140

129

14%

5%

20%

 

·     Number of clients grew by 4% to 457,871

 

West Africa

 

1Q

2019

FY

2018

1Q

2018

YoY

1Q

2019

 

YoY % Change

(constant currency)

Number of Clients (m)

0.4

0.4

0.4

7%

(5%)

n/a

Number of Branches

420

414

364

15%

1%

n/a

OLP (USD m)

65

72

58

13%

(10%)

26%

OLP/client average (USD)

157

165

149

5%

(5%)

18%

 

·     Number of clients grew to 412,271, 5% down in Q1 2019, due to lower demand for loans in the first quarter, which is typical for this time of the year following the holiday season, up by 7% YoY

·     Loan growth also was affected by a short spike in the GHS/USD rate prior towards the end of the Period, which broadly corrected in April

 

East Africa

 

1Q

2019

FY

2018

1Q

2018

YoY

1Q

2019

 

YoY % Change

(constant currency)

Number of Clients (m)

0.3

0.2

0.2

49%

8%

n/a

Number of Branches

270

244

200

35%

11%

n/a

OLP (USD m)

35

33

22

59%

7%

61%

OLP/client average (USD)

134

136

126

7%

(1%)

8%

 

·     Number of clients grew to 262,472, up by 8%

·     Following the holiday season, client and loan growth in the first quarter is typically tempered by lower demand for loans

 

Key events after the Period:

·     On 3 April 2019, our operations in Sri Lanka, Lak Jaya, became a Licensed Microfinance Company, allowing it to accept deposits from clients up to 60% of its total performing loans and advances. Lak Jaya is subject to an interest rate cap of 35% per annum.

Foreign exchange development:

Many of the company's operating currencies remained relatively stable against the US dollar except for a brief spike in the GHS/USD rate in March, which broadly corrected in April.

Outlook:

Our underlying operating and financial performance continues to be in line with our previously reported expectations for 2019.

Over the medium term we continue to target earnings growth of 20-25% per annum in US dollars.

Notice of Annual General Meeting (AGM):

As previously announced, the company will hold its AGM at 11am GMT on Wednesday 29 May 2019 at the offices of Investec, 30 Gresham Street, London, EC2V 7QP.

 

About ASA International:

ASA International is one of the world's largest international microfinance institutions, with a strong and well-established commitment to improving financial inclusion and enabling socioeconomic progress. The company does this by providing small, socially responsible loans to low-income, financially underserved entrepreneurs and business owners, most of whom are women, across its operations in South Asia, South East Asia, West and East Africa. The duration of these loans is typically between three and six months and at 31 December 2018 the average outstanding loan per client was USD 174.

In 2018, the company reported a net profit of USD 24.5 million and serves 2.2 million clients in 12 countries, with 10,678 staff across its 1,665 branches.

The company was admitted to the premium listing segment and began trading on the Main Market for listed securities of the London Stock Exchange in July 2018 under the ticker "ASAI".

www.asa-international.com

Enquiries:

 

ASA International Group plc

Investor Relations

Véronique Schyns                                                       +31 20 846 3554    

                                                                                        vschyns@asa-international.com                               

 

MHP Communications                                              +44 20 3128 8572

Charlie Barker                                                             ASAInternational@mhpc.com

Simon Hockridge

Patrick Hanrahan

Florence Mayo  


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