WA bank defies slow market, boosts lending growth

Strong growth in lending activity has delivered a 14 per cent rise in net interest income for a WA-based boutique lender.

ASX-listed Goldfields Money yesterday reported a statutory net profit after tax of $139,951 for the 2014-15 financial year.

While lower than last year’s result, the group’s CEO David Holden said this figure included impairment losses related to software development costs. Excluding those items, post-tax profit was up 50 per cent to $285,197.

The results came on the back of a 23 per cent rise in the value of loans under management, up $27.5 million to $145.8 million.

“Achieving the growth and scale in the lending book has contributed toward building a stronger underlying earnings base,” Mr Holden said.

Goldfields Money estimated its weighted average LVR in residential lending at 66 per cent, with a conservative credit risk appetite helping to deliver low rates of arrears. Repayments more than 30 days overdue stood at 0.95 per cent as of 30 June, while 90-day arrears were just 0.33 per cent.

“We are continuing to focus on building capability and investing in the business to provide the foundation and opportunities for enhanced earnings growth as we progress out strategic objectives,” said Mr Holden.

“A component of these strategic objectives is to develop and implement arrangements with strategic partners.”

These partnerships include issuing term deposits to customers of non-bank Firstmac, and an arrangement to offer products to customers of Pioneer Credit, which still has to be finalised.

“Goldfields Money is at an exciting stage of its growth journey. Our strategy of differentiation through becoming a provider of financial products to non-ADI financial services providers and the ability to upscale through investment in strategic alliances and distribution arrangements provides unique opportunities,” Mr Holden said.

“In addition, we will continue to look for roll-up opportunities to significantly grow the business and earnings profile.”

Goldfields Money traded as Goldfields Credit Union from its inception in 1982, until it was demutualised and listed in May 2012. The group operates three branches in WA, with locations in Perth, Esperance and Kalgoorlie.

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Adam Zuchetti

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