South Korea’s JB Financial logs record 2019 net profit

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Phnom Penh Commercial Bank, JB Financial’s affiliate, made a sweeping 40.5 per cent growth in net profit last year. Photo supplied

JB Financial Group, the holding group of North Jeolla Province-based Jeonbuk Bank, posted a record-high net profit last year on the back of its balanced business portfolio and overseas expansion.

The banking group recorded 341.9 billion won ($290 million) in net profit last year, up 41.6 per cent from a year earlier and hitting an all-time high, officials said on Wednesday.


Its BIS capital adequacy ratio – barometer established by the Switzerland-based Bank for International Settlements to measure the proportion of a bank’s capital to its risk assets – also came to 13.16 per cent, up 0.43 percentage point year-on-year.

The return on equity and return on assets both improved to the industry’s top-tier level, to 10.2 per cent and 0.77 per cent, respectively.

“The latest indexes indicate both internal stability and better profitability for shareholders,” the group said in its release.

Also, the nonperforming loan ratio – an indicator to assess the level of repayment risks amid uncertainties – fell 0.04 percentage point year-on-year to 0.88 per cent. The default rate also declined 0.16 percentage point to 0.66 per cent during the same period.

Steering the progress was the balanced growth of the group’s banking and nonbanking sectors, according to officials.

The group’s two flagship banks both achieved double-digit growth last year, with Jeonbuk Bank logging 109.5 billion won, up nine per cent year-on-year, and Kwangju Bank 173.3 billion won, up 13 per cent year-on-year.


Lender JB Woori Capital also saw its net profit climb 8.9 per cent year-on-year to 81.9 billion won.

In the overseas market, its affiliate Cambodian Phnom Penh Commercial Bank made a sweeping 40.5 per cent growth in net profit and came to account for 5.7 per cent of the group’s total net profit in less than three years.

Earlier in 2016, the group had acquired Phnom Penh Commercial Bank as a subsidiary of Jeonbuk Bank in a move to expand in the Southeast Asian region. Last year, the Cambodian PPCB became the first Korean financial firm operating in Cambodia to surpass 10 billion won in half-year net profit.

“Our plan is to leap forward as a small hidden champion in the financial industry by enhancing our risk management capacity and establishing a sustainable profit base,” said Chairman Kim Ki-hong.