Intesa Sanpaolo Bank Albania: a focus on stability
As new economic challenges mount, Intesa Sanpaolo Albania remains committed to delivering its goals
"“The excellent performance in 2021 is confirmation of the strength of Intesa Sanpaolo Bank Albania to react, keeping high levels of stability, credit quality, capital and liquidity” "
Alessandro D'Oria, CEO, Intesa Sanpaolo Bank Albania
Intesa Sanpaolo Bank Albania returned with great strength in 2021 following the negative economic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020.
Income from commissions grew 13% in 2021 while income from trading activities was up 10%. Normalised net profit was ALL 1.1bn – a 13% year-on-year increase compared to 2020.
The bank also recorded an annual increase of 6% in net interest income, mainly driven by a growth of 3.9% in total customer loans and by the improvement of spreads.
Credit quality is a focus of the Intesa Sanpaolo Group – and Intesa Sanpaolo Albania places strong emphasis on this. The NPL ratio reached a historical low of 3.9%, down by 0.6% year-on-year compared to 2020.
Driven by the 7.9% growth in revenues, the bank reduced the cost-income ratio by 0.4%, reaching 54.7%.
Alessandro D'Oria, the bank’s CEO, says: “All in all, the excellent performance in 2021 is confirmation of the strength of Intesa Sanpaolo Bank Albania to react, keeping high levels of stability, credit quality, capital and liquidity.”
Change in the economy
The current rise in energy prices across Europe threatens to contribute to an inflationary environment in Albania – something the economy is already grappling with.
A higher inflation rate in the domestic market was already seen at the end of 2021, with the CPI rate in Albania having rapidly exceeded the 3% price stabilisation target set by the central bank, landing at 3.9% year-on-year in February. This was mainly due to higher food prices and transportation costs.
Loan standards for households eased in the first quarter. At the same time, banks eased the terms and conditions for new loans granted to individuals.
Demand for loans was high the first quarter – especially for home mortgages – and loan approval rates increased, reflecting competition in the banking system.
Intesa Sanpaolo Bank Albania has a very solid and liquid position, providing it the base to increase market penetration in lending – still the main contributor to the bank’s business.
“Being part of the Intesa Sanpaolo Group – the best Italian bank and one of the best European banks, thanks to a resilient and well-diversified business model and a solid capital position well above regulatory requirements – we can offer trust to our customers for their deposits, but also sophisticated solutions for specific needs,” says Alessandro D'Oria
New ideas to help weather the storm
The bank is embarking on a vigorous new plan for growth as part of the Intesa Sanpaolo Group’s new 2022-2025 Business Plan.
A big focus, in line with the wider Group, is in the evolution of multi-entity core banking, which will see banking practices fully digitised for consumers, leading to new products and practices.
The bank also plans to launch new mutual funds and credit protection products.
Overall, the focus is on the simplification of processes during digitalization, becoming leaner, and being increasingly attractive to customers and employees.
Alessandro D'Oria is confident that the bank will be able to deliver: “Notwithstanding the uncertain scenario – due to the possible spill-overs of the Ukraine crisis on the economic and banking cycle – we are committed to delivering our goals, leveraging on the Intesa Sanpaolo Group’s support and best practices.”