November 2, 2018 / 10:54 AM / a year ago

Axis Bank second-quarter profit beats estimates; asset quality improves

Brochures are seen at a branch of Axis Bank in Mumbai, January 22, 2018. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui/Files

(Reuters) - Axis Bank Ltd, India’s third-biggest private sector lender by assets, on Friday posted a better-than-expected 82.6 percent jump in second-quarter profit, boosted by higher interest income and as asset quality improved.

Net profit came in at 7.90 billion rupees ($108.95 million) for the three months ended Sept. 30, compared with 4.32 billion rupees a year ago, above analysts’ estimates of a net profit of 7.41 billion rupees, according to Refinitiv data.

The bank also appointed Amitabh Chaudhry as managing director-designate effective November 19 to ensure “smooth transition” as Chief Executive Officer Shikha Sharma steps down at the end of December after being at the helm of Axis Bank for nine years.

Axis also said Deputy managing director V. Srinivasan will not seek re-appointment at the end of his current tenure on Decemeber 20.

Net interest income rose 15 percent to 52.32 billion rupees, backed by a 11 percent growth in loans.

Gross non-performing loans as a percentage of total loans stood at 5.96 percent at end-Sept, compared with 6.52 percent in the previous quarter and 5.90 percent in the same period last year.

Provisions fell 6.8 percent to 29.27 billion rupees in the quarter, while bad loan additions slowed sharply to 27.77 billion rupees.

Shares of Axis Bank closed up 1.4 percent ahead of the results.

($1 = 72.5100 Indian rupees)

Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru; Editing by Vyas Mohan

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