March 20, 2012 / 3:47 PM / 6 years ago

UPDATE 1-Nigerian bank FCMB targets earnings boost

(Adds share price, background)

LAGOS, March 20 (Reuters) - Nigeria’s FCMB will target a 14 percent return on equity and earnings per share of 1.10 Nigerian naira ($0.01) this year, after it acquired rival lender Finbank last year, chief executive Ladi Balogun said on Tuesday.

Ladi told an investor conference call he expected Finbank, which was one of the lenders rescued by the central bank in 2009, to become profitable and add more than 10 percent to FCMB’s overall profitability this year.

“Our ROE will get back to the mid-teens this year and our expectation is that EPS will be around 1.10 naira,” he said.

“With a wider retail customer base, with the fact that we will have far greater liquidity, we are confident that this transaction (the Finbank acquisition) ... will improve profitability and overall liquidity of the bank.”

FCMB shares gained 4.59 percent to 3.88 naira on Tuesday, recouping some of the losses sustained on Monday after the mid-size lender posted a pre-tax loss of 11.35 billion naira ($72.02 million) in 2011 due to bad loans.

FCMB said it expects to complete operational integration of Finbank into FCMB by June 2012, which will see it double its combined branch network and customer base.

$1 = 157.65 naira Reporting by Chijioke Ohuocha; Editing by Tim Cocks and Helen Massy-Beresford

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